Red Cross Warns US Blood Shortage Jeopardizing Patient Care

The United States is in a “dire” blood supply crisis and patients are suffering, so declared the American Red Cross (ARC) in an appeal to the nation for more blood donations. ARC’s Jan. 11 statement said the “worst blood shortage in over a decade” is posing a “concerning risk to patient care.” “Amid the crisis, doctors have been forced to make difficult decisions about who receives blood transfusions and who will have to wait,” it said. The American Red Cross, which provides 40 percent of the nation’s blood supply, reports that some hospitals are getting one-fourth of the blood needed. According to the ARC, out-patients forced to wait two or three days for the right blood type are seeing their conditions deteriorate to the point that they require hospitalization due to the delay, further straining hospital systems already inundated with patients. In a mid-December joint statement, a coalition of America’s …

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