Many blood centers have been canceling blood drives under these circumstances, and these cancellations have affected the supply.
State Sen. Robert Martwick, D-Chicago, was among those on Thursday is encouraging all who are healthy and able to donate blood.
“Hospitals are already strained treating COVID-19 patients. They don’t need a blood shortage, too,” Martwick said.
The American Red Cross Donor Center is closely monitoring the outbreak of COVID-19 and taking every precaution to protect donors from contracting the illness while donating blood. There is also no known risk of the safety of the nation’s blood supply, only the sufficiency of the supply at this time.
“While I urge all residents to stay home as much as possible, I also ask that those who are healthy within the community to donate,” Martwick said. “Blood banks are vital to our health system, and it is necessary to keep an adequate supply at all times.”
The Red Cross is also encouraging donors to use online resources to schedule their visits and fill out paperwork the day of donation.
The American Red Cross Donor Center advised to not give blood if you have been diagnosed with or are being tested for COVID-19, been within six feet of someone who has the virus or is being tested for the virus, or if you have a fever, cough, or shortness of breath.
Donor centers are following recommendations from local, state and federal health agencies to keep staff, volunteers and donors safe.
Contact the American Red Cross Donor Center at (800) 448-3543 or visit redcross.org