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ImpactLife opens Metro East donation center as blood supply dwindles

"I want to stress that we need every blood type right now,” said Kirby Winn with ImpactLife.

FAIRVIEW HEIGHTS, Ill. — ImpactLife, which supplies blood to local hospital systems such as SSM and HSHS, has seen its blood supply drop to critical levels.

It’s no secret that COVID has cut into the blood supply nationwide.

“There are more people who just are sick and don’t feel well,” said ImpactLife spokesman Kirby Winn. “You don’t come out to give blood if you don’t feel good.”


According to ImpactLife spokesman Kirby Winn blood suppliers typically see donation numbers jump in January, but this year the winter weather is wreaking havoc.

"When there is extreme cold, high winds, snow and ice people will stay in,” said Winn.

That's created a perfect storm of sorts that's leaving many local blood banks barren.

"I want to stress that we need every blood type right now,” said Winn.

At ImpactLife they like to have at least a seven-day supply of blood in reserve.

"Do you have that seven-day supply of blood right now?” asked 5 On Your Side reporter Holden Kurwicki.

"No, we don’t,” said Winn. “It has been like more to 1 to 2 days. If demand for blood were to go up suddenly due to a mass crisis that 1 to 2 day supply would really be pushed and stretched."

While blood centers and hospitals have contingency plans Winn believes they may be one step closer to a fix locally thanks to their new location in Fairview Heights.

"We have really seen through our mobile blood drives that there is a donor base on the Illinois side that we weren't serving because we didn't have a fixed site,” said Winn.

In the first week at their new location they saw around two dozen donations per day, but that's still not enough.

"We've got to do better,” said Winn. "We've got to see more donors every day and every week."

That's why they're offering incentives to try and get you in the door.

If you would like to make an appointment at the ImpactLife location nearest you click here.

To find a donation location through the Red Cross, click here.

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