Blood donations cool as summer heats up - KSFY News - Sioux Falls, SD News, Weather, Sports

Blood donations cool as summer heats up

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Across the country blood banks are running dangerously low on their blood supply. The number of blood donations are also on the decline.

That means many blood drives have found themselves struggling to beat the heat. So, how is Sioux Falls faring?

With the summer months upon us and the temperatures on the rise, the number of blood donations are actually going down. That's why the community blood bank is asking people with good veins to step on the bus.

The summer swelter plays the biggest factor in donation decline, the heat keeps donors inside and away from giving blood.

Blood drives also compete with donors on vacation, more surgeries, and a bulk of their donors are no longer in the classroom.

"When we don't have college or school in session we actually end up losing about 20% of our donor base, so that's why it's a challenge to keep up with the needs." Said Ken Versteeg, executive director for the community blood bank in Sioux Falls.

The Sioux Falls blood supply is actually doing pretty well due to a strong turnout in the heroes behind the badge campaign. But more donors are always needed.

"Working at the hospital I see patients that need blood a lot and I know it's a need and it's a good thing to do." Said Angie Rycroft.

This is only the second time Rycroft has given blood, but she says newcomers have nothing to worry about.

"They did a great job, it's easy it's fast, doesn't take long and is a good thing to do." Said Rycroft.

The normal weekly blood quota is 550 donors but during the summer months that number jumps to more than 600 donations per week. So if you have a strong arm and a good supply your blood is definitely needed.

You may not think that donating blood makes a difference but the blood bank says for every pint of blood they can save the lives of three people.

To set up a donation appointment you can call the Avera McKennan Blood Bank at 605-322-7111. Or you can find the blood mobile in several communities across the state. You can find the schedule here

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