Despite Strike, No Blood Shortage Anticipated

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The strike continues for some local American Red Cross employees, and the organization won't be taking any blood donations in the area until they're back on the job.

However, health officials say people shouldn't fear a shortage.

Marietta Memorial Hospital receives 80 to 90 percent of its blood supply from its own lab.

Lab director, Michael McGowan, says it's one of only two hospitals in Ohio with its own donor program, and only receives 10 to 15 percent from the American Red Cross.

"We can control our own supply. If we have a need we can ramp up collections. We tailor our collections to our need," McGowan said.

Even hospitals like St. Joseph's and Camden-Clark Memorial that receive the majority of their blood supply from the American Red Cross, say they have a good contingency plan in place, the blood inventory is up and they will continue to receive deliveries from the organization.

"We have plenty of blood stocks and supplies of all types. We do not see any shortage whatsoever in the near future," Greg Smith, a spokesperson for CCMH, said.

A board member with the American Red Cross says the work stoppage impacts 20 percent of all blood collections.

While it may be unfortunate that people can't donate blood to the American Red Cross locally, patients can still receive blood locally.

People are also still able to donate to other agencies such as the lab at Marietta Memorial.

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