Get our free mobile app

The American Red Cross is working with Texas Tech University to host a community blood drive event to try and replenish drained blood supply.

Blood banks across America have been experiencing a shortage of blood donations due to complications caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Out of fear of contracting the virus in 2020, many decided to refrain from donating blood and that fear still persists for many potential donors.

Donated blood is extremely important and vital to many hospital patients ranging from car crash victims to cancer patients. According to USNews.com, blood centers usually try to keep at least a weeks' supply of donated blood on hand to stay ahead of demand.

In 2020, however, during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, many blood banks could barely keep up with demand. MarketWatch.com reports that the American Red Cross supplies about 40% of the nation's donated blood, but in 2020, more than 50,000 blood drives had to be canceled because of the spreading virus.

But in April of 2021, COVID-19 infections finally appear to be dying down as vaccination efforts continue and the U.S. approaches ever closer to herd immunity. That means blood banks may start to see more and more donations in the coming months.

With that goal in mind, the American Red Cross is partnering with the Texas Tech Health Sciences Center to host their first ever blood drive in the City of Lubbock. According to Director of Red Cross South Plains, DeBorah Finlayson, who spoke with KAMC News, "If this goes well, then hopefully we'll be able to do another one next fall."

Texas Tech and the Red Cross hope to fill at least 200 appointment slots for the upcoming drive. About half of those slots have already been filled. As an incentive, those aged 16 to 24 who donate blood will receive a $10 e-gift card by email.

The blood drive is scheduled for Monday, April 26, from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the Texas Tech Health Sciences Center. To schedule your appointment, visit this website.

20 Words and Phrases That Are So 2020

KEEP READING: 50 community resources supporting Americans financially impacted by COVID-19