Federal shutdown may lead to blood shortages
Posted at: 10/04/2013 5:55 PM
By: Stuart Dyson, KOB Eyewitness News 4
The federal government shutdown is creating all kinds of chain reactions, including one that threatens to choke off some blood donations that are needed across the state.
United Blood Services has at least ten blood drives scheduled at federal agencies during October. Now that those agencies are closed, the blood drives may have to be cancelled.
“This is a big deal for us,” said Charlene Smith of United Blood Services in Albuquerque. “We always try to have a Plan B in place, so we are asking our other blood drives to have more people come to that, asking more people to come to the centers throughout the state – anything that we can do to make up for the deficit.”
There will be a mobile unit from United Blood Services on Main Street at the Albuquerque Balloon Fiesta on Saturday, and next Thursday and Friday, too.
“Many people get to the Balloon Park much earlier than the beginning of events,” Smith said. “This allows them plenty of time to donate and help others and still be able to enjoy this amazing display of color.”
Veteran donors like Sierra Cherniak will tell you it’s a piece of cake.
“It’s easy,” said Cherniak, who got into blood donation as a kind of competition with her father. “It’s the best way to give back to your community. There’s always a need for blood. It’s always something that our medical professionals are urging everyone to do. Everyone has enough of it, so I don’t know why more people aren’t doing it.”
The mobile unit at the Balloon Park will be open from 6AM to 11AM on each of the three days.
United Blood Services' website can be reached at unitedbloodservices.org