Winter is causing blood shortages to occur, Miller-Keystone Blood Center representatives report.
According to a letter sent out to previous donor from Deb Otto, director of donor resources for the center, the blood supply is extremely low and blood shortages are occurring.
Thursday didn't help the situation as the blood center was closed due to weather, making it the second time this week it was forced to close.
“To put things in perspective since the beginning of January we've had to cancel 47 blood drives and the donation centers have been closed twice,” Otto wrote. “These closings and cancellations have resulted in over 1,400 lost whole blood donations and 180 lost platelet donations.
“If we didn't have to shut down our operations due to the weather we wouldn't have an urgent need,” she continued. “But the fact is the blood inventory which we provide to your hospital is dangerously low.”
Miller-Keystone supplies local hospitals such as Blue Mountain Health System's campuses in Palmerton and Lehighton.
The center is asking people to roll up their sleeves this weekend and visit a blood center in Bethlehem, or in Allentown or Reading on Sunday, between 6:30 a.m. and 1 p.m.
To be eligible to donate, you must be at least 18 years of age, weigh over 110 pounds and be in good health.
For more information on times and locations of the blood center, or to set up an appointment, call 1-800-B-A-Donor or visit www.GIVEaPINT.org.