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Life Share Blood Center opened a new donor center on North West Avenue and is looking for blood donors during a global blood shortage.

The new center is open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 1803 B North West Avenue.

According to a press release from the American Association of Blood Banks, the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has brought on a global blood shortage as 4,000 blood drives in the United State alone have been canceled.

The release states cancelation of blood drives resulted in about a loss of 130,000 blood donations.

“We need people to prevent the blood supply from getting depleted,” said Peter Marks, M.D., Ph.D, director of the U.S. FDA’s Center for Biologists Evaluation and Research, in the release. “We need it not to get to the point that surgeries are having to get canceled.”

According to the American Red Cross, about 36,000 units of red blood cells are needed every day in the U.S., and about 7,000 units of platelets and 10,000 units of plasma are needed daily.

The AABB release notes blood donation centers are regulated by the FDA and must follow strict guidelines to ensure safe blood goes to patients and the safety of donors.

“Blood donors are needed now more than ever,” said Kate Fry, chief executive officer of America’s Blood Centers, in the release. “We cannot wait for the situation to intensify further before taking action. The blood supply cannot be taken for granted and the coronavirus only heightens the need for a ready blood supply.”

The El Dorado Life Share donor center is currently booking donation appointments for whole blood, double red and red cells and plasma, all at 15 minute intervals throughout Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

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