Blood Bank of Alaska faces shortage in inventory and donors

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ANCHORAGE (KTUU) - After the overnight earthquake, Blood Bank of Alaska said it's an event that drives home the need for preparedness to respond to any type of disaster that could happen in Alaska.

While the bank has enough inventory to respond to current needs here, it's also facing a shortage.

Robert Scanlon, CEO of Blood Bank of Alaska, said January is a challenging month with heavy usage of blood supply and fewer donors coming in regularly.

Scanlon said the bank is most in need of type O positive and O negative – the universal donor, which is used often when recipients are in a trauma until their blood can be typed.

With the possibilities of disasters like fire, flood, earthquake and volcanic activities, Scanlon said it makes preparedness even more important.

"Alaska's pretty unique in that regard, and the ruggedness of the people here allows us to respond appropriately to all of those disasters whether blood is needed or not," Scanlon said. "But especially when we have major traumas where blood is needed, the generosity across the state it's phenomenal."

To find out how to donate, visit the Blood Bank of Alaska's website here.

January is also National Blood Month, which recognizes donors.

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