Memorial Blood Centers, Hospitals See Blood Shortages

July 07, 2018 07:41 PM

Several people stepped up to help patients in Minnesota and northwestern Wisconsin in need of blood Saturday.

Dozens of people swarmed the Midtown Farmers Market in Minneapolis on Saturday to buy fruits and veggies.

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But others, like Emily Lundberg, came for something different -- to give blood.

"I like to donate every once in a while. It's a pretty easy way to do something good and help some people out," said Lundberg.

It was hard to miss where to head.

RELATED: Surly Brewing Hosts Blood Drive by Memorial Blood Centers

All donors did was board Memorial Blood Centers' huge, bright pink bus parked at the entrance of the farmers market.

Jill Quam with MBC said hospitals are running low on blood.

"Unfortunately, if we don't have the blood, the hospitals don't have it either," said Quam.

Organizers said blood shortage is something local hospitals battle every summer. When schools are out, many minds turn to vacationing and fun.

"The need is greatly," said Quam.

Health experts said about 7 percent of Americans donate regularly. Now, patients need those that donate occasionally to step up. Quam said all blood types are needed. One blood donation can help save at least three lives.

RELATED: After Transfusions Helped Save His Life, Hit and Run Victim Donates Blood

"They're all used for different types of donations. Your red cells are used for surgeries, your platelets and plasma are used for cancer patients and burn centers also get it," said Quam.

Saving lives is something Lundberg has done the last 6 years. Now, she's hoping more people will go under the needle, as well.

"It's a little painful, but not too bad," said Lundberg. "It's a pretty easy way to help some people out."

Blood centers are open Monday through Saturday. To donate, you need to be in good health and not taking any antibiotics for at least 24 hours.

You must also be 17 years old or older. Those 16 years old and younger need written permission from their guardian.

Credits

Jonathan Rozelle

Copyright 2018 - KSTP-TV, LLC A Hubbard Broadcasting Company

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