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Missouri blood centers pleading for donations

ImpactLife announced new incentives to get blood donors in the door.

CRESTWOOD, Mo. — Blood centers across Missouri are pleading for donations, as the need stays up and donor levels drop.

ImpactLife announced new incentives on Tuesday to get blood donors in the door.

As soon as you walk into ImpactLife's blood center in Crestwood, you instantly hear the sound of beeps and hums.

Those sounds are much more than just machine noises though, recruitment development coordinator Tom Kacich said, it's the sound of saving lives.

"People need to realize the impact that they can have with that," he said.

Unfortunately, according to Kacich, right now the need is outweighing that impact.

"We typically like to have a four to five-day supply of blood on hand, right now we're seeing blood types, some of them as low as one or two days supply," he said.

Kacich said everything from the warmer months to COVID cases spiking contributes to the donor decline.

"Unfortunately, the rate of donations that we need stays constant, but the donations that we receive is often fluctuating," he said.

Summer is always a challenging time for blood donation centers, but to put it into perspective, blood only lasts 42 days and that's why the need is always so great, according to Kacich.

"We really need to build a habit of people donating every couple of months, when they're eligible," he said.

Kacich said ImpactLife is hoping to encourage people to give blood, as much as they can, with a new incentive.

"Instead of giving a $10 gift card for donations, we're giving a $20 gift card through the end of this month," he said.

Basically, donors who give at ImpactLife donor centers will receive a voucher to redeem for a $20 e-gift card. This includes the donation centers in Crestwood, Fairview Heights and Saint Peters.

According to Kacich, it's something the nonprofit has had success with in the past.

"We're hoping for that turnout over a longer period of time and really, also, to help offset some people's time and effort coming to our donor centers," he said.

ImpactLife provides about 40% of blood components transfused at hospitals in the St. Louis region. 

With 1 in 7 patients requiring a blood transfusion, Kacich is hoping more people will sit in the chair, to save a life.

"Blood is used in so many different things and it's unfortunately not a commodity. It's something that has to be given," he said.

This incentive lasts through July 31, 2022.

Reminder: If you recently had COVID, you need to be 10 days symptom-free to donate.

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