LOS ANGELES (CNS) – Labeling it “a call to action,” the LAC+USC Medical Center today made an urgent appeal for blood donors, and announced that a “critically important” blood drive will take place at the hospital tomorrow.
“The current blood shortage is impacting vital medical procedures at hospitals across the county,” the hospital said in a statement.
“Without adequate blood supply, hospitals will be limited in the number of surgeries they can perform. This blood shortage can also result in delays and cancellations of scheduled surgeries. This will have an impact on the health of residents who will be forced to delay the care they need.”
The blood drive will take place from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the LAC+USC Center Courtyard, 2051 Marengo St., where a bloodmobile will be parked, the hospital said.
LAC+USC Medical Center is a 600-bed trauma center and an academic teaching hospital run by the L.A. County Department of Health Services. It’s affiliated with the Keck School of Medicine at USC and the Los Angeles County College of Nursing and Allied Health.
Last month, the American Red Cross warned of a dangerously low supply of blood both around the country and in the Los Angeles area — and hoped to induce donations by automatically entering donors into a raffle for Super Bowl tickets and other prizes.
The organization said the COVID-19 pandemic is driving the blood shortage, causing a 10% overall decline in the number of people donating blood as well blood drive cancellations and staffing limitations. The pandemic has also contributed to a 62% drop in blood drives at schools and colleges, the organization said.
“Our inventory is at crisis levels,” Raahima Shoaib Yazdani of the American Red Cross’ Los Angeles Region said at the time. “Right now, doctors are being forced to decide which patients receive blood transfusions and who must wait.”