Flu epidemic causes blood donor shortage


POSTED: Tuesday, January 22, 2013 - 3:28am

UPDATED: Tuesday, January 22, 2013 - 1:41pm

One simple blood donation can save three lives, but the recent flu epidemic has not only affected more than 1,900 people region wide, it's affected El Paso's blood supply.

United Blood Services officials say blood can't be manufactured, blood can only be donated. UBS serves 18 different hospitals all the way from Van Horn to Deming, New Mexico. With such a large area to serve, it's especially important to donate to help save a life.

"Normally at this time of the year we are recovering from the holidays. But because of the fact that we've had some bad weather and the flu epidemic, it causes a big problem for blood banks. Not just here but all over the country there is a shortage everywhere," LuAnn Wieland, the Communications Manager for UBS says.

UBS also states it only takes about half an hour to 45 minutes to donate blood, and your donation will help save three lives. However, there are some limitation and a donor can only donate every 56 days, weigh at least 110 pounds, and you may also be deferred for 24 hours if your iron is too low.

For more information - http://www.unitedbloodservices.org/RG/

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