Local hospitals join LifeShare to warn community of current crisis
Shreveport, LA — LifeShare Blood Center, with the support of several of its hospital partners, is issuing an emergency appeal.
Patient care is being severely threatened by the inadequate blood supply that the region has been experiencing for several weeks. “Unfortunately, for many people, it is a problem you don’t realize exists unless you have a friend or family member in the hospital whose treatment is delayed or postponed because blood is not available,” says LifeShare Regional Director Bobby Carney.
LifeShare is currently unable to fill hospital orders and is rationing blood. “Hospitals may ask us for 20 units, but they only get 10. We can’t send what we don’t have. We consider an adequate blood supply to be about a 3-5 day supply of red blood cells. This weekend we had as little as an 8 hour supply of some blood type,” says Sr. Director of Blood Operations Benjamin Prijatel.
Hospitals are echoing the concern as the crisis reaches a point where patient care is being affected. “Willis-Knighton relies on a dependable blood supply, so we can assure that blood products are always available whether we’re caring for patients having surgery, patients in emergency situations or those hospitalized for a variety of diseases or health conditions,” says Claire Rebouche, Patient Safety and Quality Officer at Willis-Knighton Health System.
LifeShare is asking anyone who is eligible to donate blood.
Those who can’t donate are being asked to encourage those who can to give and share information about the current crisis to their friends and family. “Anyone in the community can help us overcome this situation,” says Carney.
More information about donor eligibility and upcoming blood drives can be found at LifeShare.org.