The Texas Blood Institute says during the holiday season it is a challenge because blood donations are always down. Right now blood banks are sitting at a low normal.
On average each blood donor only gives 1.7 times a year, but each is eligible to donate up to six times a year. And in Texoma the Texas Blood Institute is feeling the pinch. Daren Coats, Executive Director comments, "The locations where we got to do blood drives actually have fewer people. People are on vacation, away from school, or spending time with there families and doing other things, rather then donating blood."
Keeping supply levels at a healthy level is most important, but difficult to maintain during the holidays. The Texas Blood Institute is the only provider of blood for hospitals in North Texas.
Coats says, "We are doing our part as good stewards of recourses to make sure that we are ahead of the curve. So trying to make sure that they never see a shortage is of the up most importance to us."
Coats says they encourage more people to donate so supply levels go up. Right now the Texas Blood Institute is sitting at a low normal. "Our blood supply is at a good level but its what we call low normal right now. We just want to make sure we don't fall into a deficit in a couple of weeks down the road."
And extreme weather such as a snow storm can definitely impact their ability to collect more blood. Raising awareness and hosting more blood drives is what the Texas Blood Institute plans to do. And in the hopes that residents keep in the holiday spirit, they encourage new and old donors to walk through their doors and save a life. Coats says, "As you sit there it's a wonderful feeling just to know that the blood is going to someone who needs it and it's going to save a life."
The Texas Blood Institute is also trying to raise awareness about donation to younger people.
They also encourage people to donate more frequently. The Texas Blood Institute says on average they do three to four blood drives a week. They encourage anyone who would like to host a blood drive to contact them at (940) 689-2400.