BloodCenter issues emergency appeal for blood donations

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MILWAUKEE (WITI) -- The BloodCenter of Wisconsin is asking for help. Officials said they are in critical need of blood, so to encourage donors; they're extending their hours at centers all over the Milwaukee area.

“It does not happen very often that the blood supply gets to a level that we become extremely concerned about our ability to have enough blood for the patients that we serve,” said Dr. Jerome Gottschall with the BloodCenter of Wisconsin.

Doctor Gottschall with the blood center of Wisconsin said they have seen shortages in the past, but one like this, where they are short all blood types is rare. Dr. Jerome Gottschall explained that the shortage is partially due to two main factors- a low number of donors this summer, on top of a high number of trauma incidents.

“Car accidents, motorcycle accidents, we’ve had a lot of shootings this summer. So those are the major causes in the trauma center,” listed Dr. Gottschall, “We've had a pretty significant trauma season, particularly in the Milwaukee area and that impacted our “O Negative” blood in particular.”

But it's not just a specific type that's low it’s all of them. Dr. Gottschall says to get replenish their supplies, they will need 1,000 additional donations.

So they're trying to bring more people in, by adding more staff and volunteers, extending their hours, and getting the word out.

Majority of blood centers will be open from 8 am to 8 pm, Monday through Wednesday.

Call 1-877-BE-A-HERO to check the times of your nearest blood center, or go to www.bcw.edu/appt to make an appointment.

Anyone 16 or older who is in general good health and meets eligibility requirements is encouraged to donate blood. Parental consent is required for 16-year-olds to donate. The entire process takes only an hour. Donors should bring a photo ID that includes birth date.

Because of the emergency appeal, hours are being extended at the following donor centers:

  • Milwaukee, 638 N. 18th St.
  • Brown Deer, 5960 W. Brown Deer Rd.
  • Greenfield, 7210 W. Edgerton Ave.
  • Wauwatosa, 8733 Watertown Plank Rd. 
  • Waukesha, 2111 Springdale Rd.
  • Racine, 1120 S. Sunnyslope Rd.
  • Kenosha, 8064 39th Ave.
  • West Bend, 130 Valley Ave.

These locations will be open until 8 p.m. Monday, September 16 through Wednesday, September 18.