Zika virus leads to serious blood shortage in Spokane


If you’ve ever thought about donating blood, now is the time. Our area is facing a serious blood shortage due to the Zika virus.

The Inland Northwest Blood Center said the virus decreased donations and low performing drives have affected the blood supply, dropping inventory to critically low levels during a historically high-need time.

“We need as many people, if they’re healthy at all, we need them to com in and we need them to donate,” Tesia Lingenfelter, Marketing and Communications Coordinator at INBC, said.

Because people traveled for spring break and are going on summer vacations to Zika-infected areas, they’re holding off on donating blood. On average, one in seven people who enters a hospital needs blood and INBC needs at least 200 donors a day to keep up.

“One donation saves up to three lives. There is no substitute for human blood, so donating is extremely important in saving lives,” Lingenfelter said.