Bad weather causes national blood shortage

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OLATHE, Kan. -- There's a huge demand for blood right now, and due to the bad weather 20 blood drives in the metro were cancelled this week. It's a trend being seen across the country leading to big shortages.

At blood drive at redeemer Lutheran church in Olathe, in between Sunday services, worshippers donated more than just their time.

“Give blood here go to church and receive the blood of Christ," said blood donor Jon Schmidt.

Schmidt says he gives blood as often as he can.

"I've been given this particular blood type and I figure one of the reasons is so that I can give and I've never has an issue with giving," said Schmidt.

The American Red Cross says winter storms and freezing temperatures have led to an urgent need for blood; a national shortage.

The American Red Cross says one pint of blood has the potential to save up to three lives. Blood drive organizer Shirley Lusk expected 40 people to donate Sunday. That's 120 lives.

"There's such a blood shortage and I have A negative and I know how rare that is, and people need it," said Lusk. "I can't imagine that happening, it's always been there any time I've needed it.”

Type O negative blood is also in demand. It is a universal blood that can be used during emergency situations when a patient's blood type is unknown.

"It's important that we all help each other out," said Booth. "You couldn't imagine the devastation if it's not there."

The American Red Cross says it holds blood drives every day. To find one taking place near you, CLICK HERE.

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