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Long winter months lead to decrease in blood donors at Mayo Clinic

ROCHESTER, Minn. (KTTC) – With heavy snowfall and extreme temperatures, the historic winter has impacted lives, businesses and our environment in unprecedented ways – including blood donations.

Mayo Clinic said that blood donations are significantly down since winter kicked into gear.

The Mayo Clinic Blood Donor Center has already cancelled four blood drives due to weather.

It also closed for the first time in its history on Feb. 25 during the blizzard.

According to the Mayo Clinic, blood donations are most crucial right now due to the increase in car crashes and trauma from the weather.

Blood Donor Program Medical Director Dr. Justin Kreuter said that they are currently looking for donors of all blood types.

“Blood transfusion is actually the most common procedure done in the hospital today. So that’s just kind of an indicator for just how important, how much of a cornerstone it is for enabling a lot of treatments that we’re doing now.” said Dr. Kreuter.

“That unit is going to help a patient either acutely save a life or aleve suffering for them. Great than 99% of the blood that is donated here is being transfused to a patient.

About 40% of Blood Center Donors are Mayo Employees.

Blood donor Kris Sauer said giving blood is something that is always been in her heart.

“As a baby, I was actually a blue baby, so I had a transfusion at birth and was a blue baby that survived in a children’s hospital in Minnesota. I just feel like I’m paying it forward because I had a transfusion at that time and so it’s important to me,” said Sauer.

“You get a big boost out of knowing that you did something good and it’s something that anybody can do without having to change your day or go out of your way too much.”

The Hilton Blood Donor Center is open Monday through Friday from 6 to 4:30 p.m.

There are a few other requirements if you are looking to save a life through blood donation.

You must weigh at least 110 lbs and be at least 17 years old.

The entire registration and donation process takes about 45 to 60 minutes.

Whole blood donors may donate every 84 days.

KTTC

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