Knoxville (September 14, 2023) – MEDIC Regional Blood Center has a stable inventory of blood products. MEDIC does have a low inventory of O Negative and O Positive blood types, but those levels are not critical currently.
The American Red Cross recently distributed a new alert that there is a national blood shortage crisis. The ARC blood supply does not affect community blood centers and specifically our area of the country as MEDIC is the provider of products. The ARC is an independent organization that is unaffiliated with community blood centers. MEDIC is not affiliated with the American Red Cross and the two organizations do not partner in any way to collect blood products. The American Red Cross does not supply any of the hospitals in our region.
MEDIC Regional Blood Center is an independent nonprofit community blood center. MEDIC is the primary blood product provider for 26 hospitals in 23 counties in East Tennessee and Southeastern Kentucky. This includes Blount Memorial Hospital, Covenant Health System, East TN Children’s Hospital, Tennova, and the University of Tennessee Medical Center locations.
America’s Blood Centers responded with this statement: The blood supply is largely local and while blood inventories in general remain lower than ideal, community blood centers can meet patient demand. There are concerning trends across the country that must be addressed, including decreases in first-time donors and donors under the age of 50, and fewer school and business-based blood drives. Blood centers are also rebounding from low donations during the summer months, a traditionally challenging time for blood donation, and collection disruptions due to natural disasters in some parts of the country.
MEDIC is currently hosting its annual MEDIC versus LifeSouth (UT vs FL) blood drive competition. Appointments for donations are preferred, but walk-in donors are welcome. Donors can call 865-524-3074 to schedule their appointment or visit medicblood.org/donate or download the new MEDIC donor app to search for a drive closest to them and schedule their appointment. For more information on MEDIC Regional Blood Center, please visit our website at www.medicblood.org or contact Vice President of Communications Kristy Altman at Kaltman@medicblood.org or by phone at 865-805-2008.