MARQUETTE, Mich. (WZMQ)- The UP Regional Blood Center is critically low on all blood types and in need of more donors. The UPRBC is the sole provider of blood to 13 hospitals across The Upper Peninsula with collection sites in Hancock, Escanaba, and Marquette.
Dana Langsford, manager of blood donation transfusion services at UPHS-Marquette, said once they have a donor at the center it can take under an hour to complete the paperwork and the blood draw, but the hardest part is getting donors through the door.
“We do supply 13 hospitals and to do that is a very large job.” Langsford said. “Probably the hardest job is to get a donor to come in here and actually donate. Once we get them in here, everything else from there is fairly easy.”
Currently, the highest need is for O and A negative blood types. Langsford said there is no substitute for blood donation, when you need blood there’s only one way to get it and that’s currently through blood donation. The UP Regional Blood Center has been dealing with shortages since the pandemic began. It takes 30 to 50 donated units each day to keep up with the demand from hospitals.
“On a blood drive day were probably close to that 30,” Langsford said, “But that being said it’s not just about the units, it’s about the types.”
UPRBC lab technicians say they’re always excited to welcome in new donors, but its most helpful when they see people coming back after 8 weeks to donate again.
The center in Marquette, located on College Avenue, is accepting walk-ins during its regular hours.
|Monday||8 AM-5 PM|
|Tuesday||8 AM–5 PM|
|Wednesday||8 AM–6 PM|
|Thursday||8 AM–5 PM|
|Friday||7 AM–4 PM|
Langsford says the donation process is easy, first step is to qualify the donor with a series of questions about personal health and travel history, to keep both the donor and anyone receiving the blood safe, afterwards there’s a short physical exam before you can donate.
Along with walk-ins at centers in Hancock and Marquette, The Blood Center also hosts mobile blood drives around The UP. Business and community groups can schedule events to reach groups not located near a donation center. For more information about how to schedule a blood drive, or a personal donation, you can visit: https://www.uphealthsystem.com/regional-blood-center
Donations at The UP Regional Blood Center help people who have been in critical accidents, are undergoing vital surgeries, or need blood transfusions as a part of a larger treatment plan. Taking just one hour of your day to donate could help three different people in need of blood right here in The UP. More information can be found on UPRBC’s Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/UPRBC906