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Blood supply drops to the lowest level after summer in at least six years

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IDAHO FALLS — The American Red Cross says an emergency blood shortage has caused the blood supply to drop to the lowest post-summer level in at least six years.

Blood donor turnout decreased by about 10 percent as summer came to an end, according to a news release Monday. Typically, fall is when the blood supply rebounds from summer blood shortages, but a surge in COVID-19 cases across the U.S. due to the Delta variant has contributed to the lowest donor turnout of the year. 

The Red Cross has to collect 10,000 additional blood products each week this month to meet hospital and patient needs.

Donations are especially critical for those battling cancer and other serious conditions. Officials say cancer patients use nearly 25% of the blood supply. 

The Red Cross is offering an incentive for people who help and donate during October. People who come to donate will receive a link by email to claim a free Zaxby’s Signature Sandwich reward or get a $5 e-gift card to a merchant of their choice.

Donors are asked to make an appointment by visiting the Red Cross Blood Donor App, visiting RedCrossBlood.org, or calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).

Upcoming blood donation opportunities are coming up on Oct.16 to 31. Locations and times are listed below.

BANNOCK COUNTY

Pocatello

  • 10/18/2021: 12 p.m. – 5:30 p.m., Holiday Inn Express – Pocatello, 200 Via Venitio
  • 10/26/2021: 9 a.m. – 2 p.m., Planet Fitness, 4235 Yellowstone Ave.

BINGHAM COUNTY

Blackfoot

  • 10/20/2021: 9 a.m. – 3 p.m., Spudnik, 584 W. 100 N.

BONNEVILLE COUNTY

Idaho Falls

  • 10/21/2021: 2 p.m. – 7 p.m., Hilton Garden Inn, 700 Lindsay Blvd.
  • 10/25/2021: Noon – 4 p.m., Greater Idaho Falls Association of REALTORS®, 1508 Midway

CARIBOU COUNTY

Grace

  • 10/28/2021: 10 a.m. – 4 p.m., Grace High School, 704 S. Main St.

JEFFERSON COUNTY

Menan

  • 10/26/2021: 2 p.m. – 7 p.m., Menan Town Hall, 659 E. 3550 N.

Rigby

  • 10/19/2021: 10 a.m. – 3 p.m., Jefferson County Annex Building, 210 Courthouse Way Suite 240

Terreton

  • 10/22/2021: 12 p.m. – 5 p.m., ALC Building, 1280 E. 1500 N.

MADISON COUNTY

Rexburg

  • 10/27/2021: 9 a.m. – 3 p.m., BYU-ID Center, 525 S. Center St.
  • 10/28/2021: 9 a.m. – 3 p.m., BYU-ID Center, 525 S. Center St.
  • 10/29/2021: 9 a.m. – 3 p.m., BYU-ID Center, 525 S. Center St.
  • 10/30/2021: 9 a.m. – 3 p.m., Rexburg Idaho Stake Center, 845 West 7th S.
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