Blood Center Seeks Donations as Demand Increases

Published 06/09 2014 03:39PM

Updated 06/09 2014 10:58PM

(ST. JOSEPH, Mo.) Krista Kiger has been donating blood for 34 years.

"Once I did it for the first time, you know, it was like, okay I can do this," she said.

Her latest donation at the Community Blood Center in St. Joseph comes at a time when the need is critical.

"Our numbers are critically low, which means we're usually at less than a one day supply," said Danika Jackson, Community Blood Center.

The drop in donations is typical this time of year.

"A lot of time, people are on summer vacation, so everybody is out thinking about having fun. Nobody really thinks about the blood supply being down," said Jackson.

And, she says, timing is key.

"There's a reason why we have a certain amount that we like to collect at a certain day because if they go past that expiration date then we can't use them anymore," added Jackson.

The Community Blood Center partners with area hospitals to provide blood for patients in the region.

Kiger saw the impact first hand.

"It was just a thrill. This little boy had been through, oh my gosh. In just a short little lifespan he had been through so much," said Kiger.

Regional blood centers say the greatest need right now is for type O Negative blood. And, for those who meet the donation guidelines, it only takes a short amount of time.

You have the potential to save at least two lives in ten to twelve minutes of sitting there," said Kiger.  "You just kind of brace yourself knowing that there's going to be a little stick and then there you are.

Donors must be at least 16 years old to give blood. Click here to learn more.

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