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Region Down to Five-Hour Supply of Blood

By H. Wicai, KWMU

St. Louis, Mo. – The Missouri - Illinois blood Services Region of the American Red Cross is reporting a severe shortage of blood.

Spokesman Jim Williams says the supply is so low it's not being measured in days' worth of blood, it's being measured in hours' worth of blood. He says the region is down to a five-hour supply.

I was just down in the cooler and I could probably count in a matter of minutes how many units of blood we have on the shelves right now and that's not good," Williams said. "Typically the shelves are full and we look for a three to five day supply of blood. That means we probably have about 200 units of blood on the shelf and that could go quickly.

Williams says this has been one of the toughest summers in well over a decade for blood donation.

The Red Cross is extending its hours at its fixed donation sites Thursday night, Friday and through the weekend for donations. Call 1-800-GIVE-LIFE for information.