Bloodworks Northwest faces critical blood shortage, donors and staff needed

A ‘perfect storm’ of issues has left Bloodworks Northwest facing another critical blood and platelet shortage, which will affect people needing cancer treatment.

Bloodworks Northwest says staff shortages, COVID constraints and an "alarming rise" in appointment cancellations has led the organization to announce an emergency appeal to fill 2,000 open appointments. They also desperately need to hire 50 staff members to collect blood.

This critical shortage directly affects cancer patients awaiting treatment.

"Bloodworks is raising staffing levels of our Blood Collection Specialists to ensure the ability to collect the blood our community needs to care for patients," said Vicki Finson, Bloodworks Executive Vice President of Blood Services,. "Blood Collection Specialists are incredible healthcare professionals who ensure our donors have great experiences and save lives."

The staff shortage has led to fewer donor appointments being available, and COVID protocols has limited the number of people able to staff clinics and popups.

"This ongoing blood shortage is an alarming situation, and critically ill and injured patients need our generous donors to help answer the call now," said Bloodworks Northwest President and CEO Curt Bailey. "While a four or five-day supply is ideal for patients, our community has less than a 24-hour supply in stock of Type O positive – the most commonly transfused blood type. It’s critical to public health that our community take care of one another by donating blood."

Anyone looking to make an appointment is urged to call (800) 398-7888 or visit the Bloodworks Northwest website.

RELATED: Sharp drop in donor turnout contributes to blood shortage emergency in the Northwest

PREVIOUS COVERAGE: Bloodworks Northwest says 12,000 additional blood donors needed by Labor Day

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