Blood donors 'urgently' needed; Lack of blood caused by saline shortage

Donors of all blood types are needed

SAN DIEGO - Donors of all blood types are "urgently" needed to give blood, the San Diego Blood Bank announced in a press release Monday.

The supply shortage is caused by a shortage of saline, which allows for a total of 250 donations per week. The saline shortage was caused by a worse than average flu season in December and January that spiked the demand for intravenous saline for these dehydrated patients, according to the release.

The loss of the donations has thus limited the amount of blood available for local hospital patients, according to the release.

"Usually blood banks with shortages can turn to other parts of the country for help, but currently there is nowhere to turn due to bad weather and the saline shortage across the country,” blood bank spokesperson Lynn Stedd said.

The FDA is working with the manufacturers to address the shortage with a resolution promised by the second quarter of 2014, which could mean long-term blood shortages without community response to this appeal, according to the release.

For more information or to donate blood, visit the San Diego Blood Bank's website www.sandiegobloodbank.org.

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