KALISPELL — A nation-wide blood shortage due to coronavirus concerns caused panic for red cross workers during the early stages of the pandemic.
Flathead Valley residents answered the call in a big way.
Red Cross Blood Drive account manager Sandy Carlson said donors in the Flathead Valley have restocked the area’s blood supply during a time of crisis. Carlson said the Flathead Valley and surrounding areas are averaging five blood drives a week.
She said extra safety measures are in place including donor temperature readings, and required masks for both donors and staff members.
Once donated, Carlson said blood has a 42-day shelf life. She added that blood donors will be in high demand again in the coming months.
“We have a wonderful inventory right now because of the outpouring of donations, but we want to maintain that inventory as we go forward," said Carlson.
She adds, donors can safely donate blood once every 56 days.
Those wishing to donate blood can find out more information at redcrossblood.org