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Red Cross Sees Blood Donation Shortage

Storms and power outages in Indiana have contributed to a drop in the Red Cross' donations.

Red cross donation

Photo: Ozarks Red Cross (Flickr)

A man gives blood during a blood drive in Springfield MO.

The Red Cross says it is in the midst of its worst blood shortage in 15 years, and Indiana has contributed to that drop.

Blood donations normally go down about 20 percent in the summer because people are on vacation, and high schools and colleges which often sponsor blood drives are out of session. But western wildfires and severe storms in parts of the country have canceled more drives.

Tracy Duncan with the Red Cross‘s Indiana-Ohio region, which covers the northern third of Indiana, says even Hoosiers have not been immune.

“As you continue to have storms that have hit the Midwest and the Northeast, we lost power at our donor center in Fort Wayne, both of our donor centers there for a while, and had people living in a shelter for up to a week,” she says.

Indiana has been less hard-hit than other states. Because the Red Cross uses a national distribution system, there is no such thing as a one-state shortage.

In contrast, the Indiana Blood Center which serves the Indianapolis area and southern Indiana, says its supplies are right where they should be.

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