COVID-19 is causing a blood shortage; medical industry urges people to donate

Social distancing and a lack of community blood drives are causing a blood shortage in New Jersey.

News 12 Staff

Jun 30, 2020, 2:38 AM

Updated 1,391 days ago

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Social distancing and a lack of community blood drives are causing a blood shortage in New Jersey.
Dr. Rajan Gupta, chief of the Division of Acute Care Surgery at Robert Wood Johnson Medical School says that the blood and platelets shortage will impact patients that need treatment.
“As we now open up our elective volumes, the impact of those lack of donations for the last three months are beginning to really impact us,” Gupta says.
Gupta says that as the state reopens and more people go out in public, the need for blood is greater.
"Now as people are getting out and driving, we're seeing an increase in car crashes, in our trauma volumes, and elective cases going up. The impact is significantly felt,” he says.
Fourth-year medical student Sam Cheng is the central lead of the Blood Initiative - a combined effort between Robert Wood Johnson and Rowan University medical students working to raise awareness about blood donation and organize blood drives.
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“There’s so many situations where people need blood and we’re trying to create as many opportunities as possible for people to make those blood donations,” Cheng says.
Gupta says that they are complying with social distancing rules at the blood donation centers
“We’re masks and keeping the environment safe as we can for people to get out and donate blood,” he says.
Gupta and Cheng say that people who volunteer to donate can end up saving a life.
Information about locations for blood drives can be found on the Red Cross website.


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