The Associated Press
SEATTLE — People in the Seattle area haven’t stopped giving blood amid criticism that the American Red Cross destroyed thousands of pints of blood because they had outlasted their shelf life.
Another organization — the Puget Sound Blood Center — collects blood in this region.
But elsewhere in the Northwest, American Red Cross officials say they’re concerned about a drop in donors.
About 25 to 30 people a day have been canceling donations in Washington, central and western Oregon and southern Alaska, according to Joan Manning, director of Pacific Northwest Regional Blood Services, the Red Cross regional office in Portland, Ore.
"Some cancellations are the result of (negative) publicity," Manning said.
The organization must collect about 5,000 pints of blood each week to meet the needs of 80 hospitals it serves in the Pacific Northwest.
Blood donors showed up in droves in the days following the Sept. 11 attacks. So much blood was donated through the Red Cross that hospitals weren’t able to use it all.
The Puget Sound Blood Center has seen a 10 percent to 15 percent increase in the number of people wanting to give blood, but avoided an oversupply by asking people to wait until this month to donate.
"It’s worked out well," said blood center spokesman Keith Warnack, "because if we hadn’t postponed them, we would have had to discard a number of units of blood."
Copyright ©2001 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.