The need for blood drives and donations might sound routine, but hospitals need to know summer blood drives are on the schedule. As of the date of this article, there is a need for 3,000 more blood drives* May through August for Vitalant to meet the medical needs of patients and healthcare partners nationwide.
We frequently ask altruistic groups to host one or two drives every summer to ensure blood is available, and the sense of urgency to schedule blood drives this summer remains critical to patient care. As many of our personal routines have returned to normal since 2020, blood drives have not bounced back and the number of people giving blood has steadily declined. Type-O blood, the most transfused blood type in emergency situations, recently dipped to its lowest level in three years, making it increasingly difficult to provide an adequate blood supply for every patient need before it arises.
Summer is typically a challenging time of year to collect blood for a few predictable reasons. Blood donations decline due to vacations, busy schedules and schools going on hiatus. Vitalant needs to collect about 5,000 blood donations every day to maintain an adequate blood supply for hospitals. Blood donations may decline in the summer but the need for blood does not.
Here are a few ways you can help. If you host one or two blood drives a year, consider adding one more this summer. If you host three or more blood drives a year and cannot add another, encourage someone you know to become a blood drive coordinator [LINK TO https://vitalant.org/Host-a-blood-drive-(1)/Learn-about-hosting]. And if you are eligible to donate and know others who are, too, book your summer appointments now [LINK TO vitalant.org]
Looking for unique ways to engage donors? Consider hosting around one of the major holidays when we offer an extra incentive for people to roll up their sleeves. Volunteers hosting a blood drive and all presenting blood donors will get a special thank you during these critical days.
|2023-24 Season||Start Date||End Date||Thank You|
|Memorial Day||May 26||June 1||T-shirt|
|July 4th||July 1||July 7||Cooler|
|Labor Day||Sept. 1||Sept. 7||Beanie|
When you start making your summer plans, keep this in mind: There is no substitute for blood. It is a precious resource that can only be collected from selfless individuals answering the ever-present call to donate blood. The decisions we make today to host a blood drive and give blood in the coming months will help patients enjoy another summer with friends and family.
Contact your Vitalant representative or click here to be contacted about booking a summer blood drive. Because of you, hospitals will have the blood they need to treat patients.
*Data as of Jan. 18, 2023. Estimated 3,000 unique blood drives collecting 20 donations each.