SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — The Community Blood Bank is facing a severe blood shortage as the coronavirus pandemic continues.
With many practicing social distancing in KELOLAND, the community blood bank is feeling the effects.
As more people in KELOLAND stay home to slow the spread of the coronavirus, Rita Nelson with the Community Blood Bank says planning blood drives is getting tough.
Over the last week she’s had nine cancellations.
“So far I have been blessed to be able to replace those. We’ve had Hy-Vee’s and Sunnycrest Church, we’ve had a few places step up and offer to host the bloodmobile,” Nelson said.
With the bloodmobile at Good Samaritan, employee Tracy Stack did her part to donate blood.
“They come to Good Sam every so often and so I try to give blood when I can,” Stack said.
While the shortage of blood is related to the coronavirus pandemic, it’s not necessarily coronavirus patients who will benefit from these drives.
“We need blood for our patients that are cancer patients that are here in the hospital, our surgeries that are going on, the car accident that’s going to happen. We need to have the blood on the shelf ready and available for those patients,” Nelson said.
Rita says 80 percent of the supply in KELOLAND comes from the Community Blood Bank, making this even more important.
While some businesses have sent employees home for the time being, Nelson encourages those who are open and able, to host a drive.
“We need businesses and community members to step up and maybe invite the bloodmobile to have an opportunity to save lives at their business or church, any location that could host the bloodmobile,” Nelson said.
“It’s easy to do. As long as you have, your iron is good and all of that it’s nice to give blood for others to get healthy,” Stack said.
If you’re interested in hosting a blood drive at your business, click here.