Historically Low Blood Supply In San Diego County, Donors Needed

The American Red Cross is asking for donors as blood supply is critically low. The need is especially great as fewer donors contribute during the holiday season.

In a statement, the Red Cross said, "We’re at a point where some patients relying on a transfusion may not receive the blood they need. If more donors don’t come forward to give blood, some patients requiring a transfusion may potentially face delays in care."

The Red Cross has scheduled dozens of blood drive events in December at locations throughout San Diego (see list below). As an incentive to donate, anyone who donates from December 17 - January 2 will receive an exclusive Red Cross long-sleeved T-shirt (while supplies last).

Donors are urged to schedule an appointment now by using the Red Cross Blood Donor App, visiting RedCrossBlood.org or calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767). There is no blood donation waiting period for those who have received a flu shot or a Moderna, Pfizer or Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine or booster, so long as they are symptom-free.

Blood drive safety: Each Red Cross blood drive and donation center follows the highest standards of safety and infection control, and additional precautions – including face masks for donors and staff, regardless of vaccination status – have been implemented to help protect the health of all those in attendance. Donors are asked to schedule an appointment prior to arriving at the drive.

  • Cardiff by the Sea

12/23/2021: 9 a.m. - 3 p.m., The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1444 Lake Drive

  • Carlsbad

12/23/2021: 9 a.m. - 3 p.m., Shoppes at Carlsbad, 2525 El Camino Real

  • Chula Vista

12/20/2021: 11:30 a.m. - 5:30 p.m., Chula Vista Center, 555 Broadway, Suite 138

12/27/2021: 1 p.m. - 7 p.m., Chula Vista Elks Lodge, 901 Elks Lane

  • Coronado

12/28/2021: 9:30 a.m. - 4 p.m., City of Coronado Community Center, 1845 Strand Way

  • El Cajon

12/27/2021: 11 a.m. - 5 p.m., Parkway Plaza, 415 Parkway Plaza

  • Encinitas

12/21/2021: 9:30 a.m. - 4 p.m., Encinitas Library, 540 Cornish Drive

12/29/2021: 8 a.m. - 8 p.m., Best Buy, 1046 N. El Camino Real

  • Escondido

12/23/2021: 9 a.m. - 3 p.m., Escondido East Valley Community Center, 2245 East Valley Parkway

12/26/2021: 10 a.m. - 4 p.m., Westfield North County, 272 E. Via Rancho Pkwy

  • Fallbrook

12/21/2021: 9:30 a.m. - 3:30 p.m., Fallbrook Library, 124 South Mission Rd

12/28/2021: 10 a.m. - 4 p.m., Christ the King Lutheran Church, 1620 S Stage Coach Lane

  • La Jolla

12/21/2021: 10 a.m. - 4 p.m., Torrey Pines Church, 8320 La Jolla Scenic Dr N

  • La Mesa

12/18/2021: 9 a.m. - 3 p.m., La Mesa Adult Enrichment Center, 8450 La Mesa Blvd

  • Lakeside

12/30/2021: 9 a.m. - 4 p.m., Hill Country Community Church, 8950 Lakeview Rd

  • Oceanside

12/22/2021: 1 p.m. - 7 p.m., Oceanside Masonic Center, 511 Eucalyptus

12/23/2021: 10 a.m. - 4 p.m., Oceanside First Presbyterian Church, 2001 El Camino Real

12/30/2021: 9 a.m. - 3 p.m., Oceanside Masonic Center, 511 Eucalyptus

  • Poway

12/20/2021: 9 a.m. - 3:30 p.m., Mossy Nissan Poway, 14100 Poway Rd

12/22/2021: 9:30 a.m. - 3:30 p.m., Poway Branch Library, 13137 Poway Rd

  • San Diego

Red Cross Kearny Mesa Blood Donation Center, 4229 Ponderosa Ave., Suite C

See RedCrossBlood.org for hours

12/22/2021: 9 a.m. - 3 p.m., Bernardo Heights Country Club, 16066 Bernardo Heights Pkwy

12/28/2021: 10 a.m. - 4 p.m., Mission Valley YMCA, 5505 Friars Road

12/29/2021: 10 a.m. - 4 p.m., Carmel Mountain Ranch Library, 12095 World Trade Drive

12/29/2021: 10 a.m. - 4 p.m., Rancho Penasquitos Library, 13330 Salmon River Road

  • San Marcos

12/20/2021: 9 a.m. - 3 p.m., Rock Church, 1370 W San Marcos Blvd

12/30/2021: 10 a.m. - 4 p.m., The Lodge at Lake San Marcos, 1105 La Bonita Dr

Save time during donation

Donors can also save up to 15 minutes at the blood drive by completing a RapidPass®. With RapidPass®, donors complete the pre-donation reading and health history questionnaire online, on the day of donation, from a mobile device or computer. To complete a RapidPass®, follow the instructions at RedCrossBlood.org/RapidPass or use the Red Cross Blood Donor App.

To donate blood, individuals need to bring a blood donor card or driver’s license or two other forms of identification that are required at check-in. Individuals who are 17 years of age in most states (16 with parental consent where allowed by state law), weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors 18 years of age and younger also must meet certain height and weight requirements.

Health insights for donors

At a time when health information has never been more important, the Red Cross is screening all blood, platelet and plasma donations from self-identified African American donors for the sickle cell trait. This additional screening will provide Black donors with an additional health insight and help the Red Cross identify compatible blood types more quickly to help patients with sickle cell disease who require trait-negative blood. Blood transfusion is an essential treatment for those with sickle cell disease, and blood donations from individuals of the same race, ethnicity and blood type have a unique ability to help patients fighting sickle cell disease.   

Donors can expect to receive sickle cell trait screening results, if applicable, within one to two weeks through the Red Cross Blood Donor App and the online donor portal at RedCrossBlood.org. 

Photo Credit: Airman 1st Class Dana Butler, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

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