High Summer Need and Staff Shortage

Last Updated on August 13, 2021

LifeServe Blood Center, the non-profit community-based blood supplier in our region, is now one of hundreds of organizations across the state facing unprecedented and critical staff shortages. These staff shortages and lack of blood donor turnout is causing the blood supply to dip to alarmingly low levels.

The staff shortage is impacting the blood center’s ability to hold mobile blood drives.  Beginning July 5, LifeServe Blood Center is urging individuals to schedule appointments to give blood at their local donor center to boost the blood supply.   

“In an effort to ensure the adequacy of our community blood supply, we are shifting operations to utilize staff resources in the most efficient and effective manner possible.  In lieu of holding numerous on-site mobile blood drives (which represent more than half of the blood collected by the organization), blood collection efforts will be focused at our nine donor center locations while we actively recruit, hire, and train new team members” said Danielle West, Director of PR and Marketing at LifeServe. “As the sole supplier of blood and blood products to more than 120 hospitals across Iowa, Nebraska, and South Dakota, we need community support to ensure that our medical partners have access to the blood products they need. This unprecedented staffing shortage, coupled with lower than normal blood donor turnout, is impacting our blood supply. In fact, donor numbers are lower now than it was during the pandemic. Currently, we have about a day’s supply of certain blood types. Our normal range is three to five days,” said West.

This shortage comes at a high need time of the year. As the nation resumes some level of normalcy with progress in our battle against the pandemic, there is a nationwide blood shortage. Travel, outdoor fun, home improvement projects, and other summer activities can all lead to an increase in traumas in local emergency rooms. Many of these patients will require blood transfusions as part of their treatment or recovery. These factors and more have led to a rise both in the number of patients who need blood – and an increased need for eligible individuals to donate. 

Remember – Your Blood, Your Hospital, Your Neighbors – it’s all connected, and you’re the lifesaving link! Thank you for being a LifeServer, and we hope to see you on our schedule soon!