Blood shortage crisis raises concerns locally at Vitalant
Vitalant in Fargo is actively recruiting potential donors ages 20 to 45 as current donors continue to age out.
FARGO, N.D. (KVRR) — “When you donate blood, you’re literally saving someone’s life which is just awesome and it doesn’t take much to do it,” Roberta Pytlik of Fargo said.
A nationwide blood shortage is impacting hospitals and blood banks across the country.
Vitalant Regional Director of Donor Recruitment Jennifer Bredahl says it’s impacting doctors and patients.
“Physicians are having to, they know the concern right now with hospitals throughout the country and they’re having to really look through their patient list and see what surgeries can happen, which ones can be delayed. Which treatment can go with less blood that they typically could use. It’s not a good spot to be in if you’re a patient. Families and patients have enough to worry about. This is something that shouldn’t have to be in their thought process,” said Bredahl.
Bredahl says about three percent of the population donates but that isn’t enough.
“Seasonal challenges are always a problem for us in the Midwest. Obviously with snow storms, things shut down. We don’t always get the blood that we count on, on those days,” said Bredahl.
A local woman is stepping up. She says before he passed, her father was a regular donor as well.
“He was diagnosed with a blood cancer in 2018, and the reason he went to the doctor was because he wanted to donate blood and he got deferred,” said Pytlik.
Blood donations saved her daughter’s life when doctors performed a blood transfusion after a tumor was found and removed on her placenta. She says she’s extremely thankful for the people who donate.
“We’re a small community and Fargo is always kind of prided itself on taking care of each other and this is just another way to take care of each other,” said Pytlik.
With it being National Donor Month, Vitalant is having a five thousand dollar giveaway to attract more donors.