Red Cross Facing Emergency Blood Shortage In Maine

Aug 19, 2019

The American Red Cross is facing an emergency need for blood in Maine and across the nation.

“Right now the Red Cross has less than a 3-day supply of most blood types available, and less than a 2-day supply of type O blood,” says Mary Brant, spokesperson for the Red Cross in northern New England. "Blood donations are currently being distributed to hospitals faster than donations are coming in and more donations are needed now to help replenish the blood supply."

Credit Bryan Jones / Flickr/Creative Commons

Bryant says the organization tries to keep a 5-day blood supply on hand.

“We cannot stockpile blood,” she says. “If you gave a blood donation today, that blood donation has a shelf life of 42 days.”

Brant says only 3 in 100 people in the U.S. donate blood, and more donors are needed right now. She says it’s not uncommon for there to be blood shortages during the summer. People can find out about where to donate by calling the Red Cross at 874-1192 or visiting their website.