The scarcity has worsened due to a decline in donations and October’s recent traumas during the pandemic, according to the organization. We Are Blood provides donations to more than 40 hospitals and facilities in 10 counties in the area.
“We are seeing—as our community is coming back fully from the third spike—normalcy return for most people,” said Nick Canedo, We Are Blood's vice president of community engagement. “We aren't seeing that return for blood drives in our community, or attendance to donations in our centers or mobile blood drives.”
The center emphasized the need for Type O-negative, Type O-positive and platelet donations. A flu or COVID-19 vaccine does not make an individual ineligible for donations, Canedo said.
According to the organization, at least 200 donations are required daily to meet regional needs. Blood drives can be scheduled and hosted by area companies or a donation center, according to We Are Blood.
“The holiday season is a time where we always anticipate a dip in donations, even under normal circumstances,” Canedo said. “We see less blood drives hosted by communities. Having this shortage experience now as we approach Thanksgiving and the December holidays is a bad situation. We should be building up to prepare for the holidays, but right now we’re trying to deal with a serious shortage.”
Residents can make an appointment online at www.weareblood.org/donor to donate blood at area centers, including locations on North Lamar Boulevard in Central Austin, in Round Rock and in South Austin on Slaughter Lane. Donors can also give blood weekly at mobile drives.
“We're seeing such an extraordinary need for blood transfusions in our community because of more people in need,” Canedo said. “Every time you come and donate you’re making a lifesaving difference for a person or family. That’s such an important thing during the holiday season.”