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Blood shortages in Northern Ohio continue to worsen following a drop in donations nationwide

An American Red Cross Blood Drive
American Red Cross
An American Red Cross Blood Drive takes to combat the blood shortage nationwide.

Blood shortages across the country are causing challenges in many communities, and Northeast Ohio is no different.

Jim McIntyre, the spokesman for the American Red Cross of Northern Ohio, says the COVID-19 pandemic, recent winter storms, and worker shortages are all contributing to the low supply. He says there is only one way to combat the issue.

Spokesperson for the American Red Cross of Northern Ohio Jim McIntyre

“People can make appointments to donate blood. It’s the only way to mitigate the shortage," McIntyre said. "Blood cannot be manufactured. There is no substitute for blood, and it can’t be stockpiled. There is a limited shelf life to it.”

The Red Cross has seen a 10% decline in donations since the start of the pandemic. McIntyre says it will take months of donations at pre-pandemic levels to get out of the shortage. Blood type O negative and positive are in the lowest supply.

Chris Abreu is a junior journalism major with a broadcast focus at Kent State with plans to graduate in May 2023. He spent his years at Kent State being heavily involved in TV2 with positions as a reporter, producer, anchor, and even News Director. He has professional reporting experience while working in Cleveland through News Lab, a reporting initiative at the university. Chris hopes to graduate and work in some form of production whether that be content creation through reporting or producing a podcast.