SHREVEPORT, La. (KSLA) - The holiday season is known as the season for giving — but blood centers like LifeShare are seeing a downturn in donations.
“A lot of folks are traveling so they’re not in town to donate,” said Shreveport’s Regional Director Bobby Carney. “We rely on the schools heavily so all of the schools are out and a lot of the places that we go to are half staffed during the holidays so it’s a really difficult time for us to collect.”
Carney says they use around 70 to 80 units a day, and while things aren’t critical, a major accident could send them there.
“We don’t just donate it (blood) and take it straight to a hospital,” he said. “It takes two days to process it, and get it to a hospital and then they test it also so it takes a minute. So when it happens is probably too late so we need to always make sure there’s blood on the shelves.”
Ronnie Miller donates blood every few weeks and says his dad inspired him to do it.
“My dad started 50 years ago, and got me to do it,” he said. “He gave 35 gallons and he told me it doesn’t hurt, be a man and go and as long and you don’t need it you’re lucky.”
Mike VanSant also comes by and donates every few weeks and has been doing so for the last 30 years.
“It’s very important because I found out years ago giving platelets and plasma help cancer patients and so with the platelets it’s very important that they can be done,” he said.
Carney says they’ll be hosting a family and friends blood drive on Christmas Eve.