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The Blood Bank of Delmarva announces its first blood emergency of the year

By Vegasjon, via Wikimedia Commons

The Blood Bank of Delmarva announces its first blood emergency of 2023.

“We have been seeing slower than normal schedules throughout the winter time, especially January and February. We saw 1,600 fewer donors in the first two months of the year,” said Blood Bank of Delmarva spokesperson Tony Prado.

The Blood Bank of Delmarva declared a total of 5 blood emergencies in 2022, and this year is off to a much rougher start than last.

Ideally, the daily donations allow for a steady 7 day supply of blood to 19 hospitals across the Delmarva Peninsula. But due to a steady decrease in scheduled appointments and increase in cancellations, the blood supply is approaching a critical low. Especially for the highly sought after blood types O+, O-, and B-.

School breaks, cold and flu season, and a general lag in donations during winter months account for much of the drop, however there continues to be a drop in first time donors due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

They remain 33% lower than pre-pandemic levels.

Prado says they understand people are less than thrilled to have a needle put into their arm.

“But everyone who does it has a great feeling afterward. They know that they’ve helped their community and that they’re saving lives. And one of the popular features we have for donors is they love it when they get an email telling them where their blood went, what hospital it went to. And that is a powerful reminder of what a good deed they did,” he explained.

And for those who lived in Europe during certain periods of time that were told they were not eligible to give blood due to a risk of Mad Cow disease, the FDA recently lifted those restrictions.

To review your eligibility and schedule an appointment, visit or call 1-888-8-BLOOD-8.

Quinn Kirkpatrick was born and raised in Wilmington, Delaware and a graduated of the University of Delaware. She joined Delaware Public Media in June 2021