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Jacque Decker sets up signs to promote the 9th Annual Tyler Junior College “50 Gallon Challenge” blood drive on March 30, 2020.

East Texas blood centers are facing a significant drop in donations as the rest of the country is going through the “longest national blood shortage,” putting local patient care at risk.

According to Carter BloodCare’s website, the blood center is in critical need of O+, O- A-, B+, B- and platelet donations. Clinton McCoy, director of mobile recruitment and regional operations for Carter BloodCare, said if there were to be a mass accident, there would not be sufficient blood supply at local hospitals for those who would need transfusions. He added that as of Thursday, the center is down 40,000 units of blood collected from blood drives, compared to 2019 and 2021 data.

In 2019, Carter BloodCare held 7,100 blood drives across the country. In 2020, there were 5,800 drives, and in 2021, there were 6,044. As January is National Blood Donor month, there are a series of blood drives being hosted across East Texas now through the month of February.

On Saturday, the Kendra Scott store in Tyler will be hosting a mobile blood drive at the Village at Cumberland Park, suite 424, from noon to 4 p.m. That same day, there will be another drive at Walmart in Gun Barrel City at 1200 West Main St., from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Sunday, St. Mary Magdalene Catholic Church will also be hosting a mobile blood drive, sponsored by Knights of Columbus & ACTS, at 18221 FM 2493, Flint, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. That same day, there will be another blood drive in Athens, at the First United Methodist Church in the Activity Building, located at 225 Lovers Lane, from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Monday, there will be a Carter BloodCare Bus at 2600 Dudley Rd. in Kilgore from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Also Monday, there will be another drive in Palestine at Tractor Supply, located at 2200 S. Loop 256, from 2 to 6 p.m.

On Jan. 21, there will be a blood drive hosted by Carter BloodCare at the Cassity Jones parking lot, located at 1209 Hwy 79 N., from 2 to 6 p.m.

Brookshire’s in Lindale will be hosting a mobile drive Jan. 22 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at 521 S Main St.

On Jan. 23, Tractor Supply of Gilmer is hosting a mobile drive at 968 Hwy 271 S. from 1 to 5 p.m.

UT Health East Texas will be hosting a mobile drive Jan. 24 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. in Rusk, located at their clinic at 1325 N. Dickinson Dr.

The next day on Jan. 25, there will be a blood drive at Robroy Industries, located at 1100 US Hwy 271 S. in Gilmer, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

On Jan. 26, Tyler Junior College will be hosting a mobile drive from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Rogers Student Center.

On Jan. 28, Peltier Subaru will be hosting a mobile drive in Tyler at their office, located at 3200 SSW Loop 323, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Azalea Orthopedics will also be hosting a mobile blood drive the same morning at 3414 Golden Road in Tyler, from 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. There will be another drive going on in Emory at Lake Fork Trophy Lures from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

The Eastern Hill Church of Christ will also be hosting a mobile drive Jan. 30 in Athens at 1200 E. Corsicana St. from 8 a.m. to noon. That same day, there will be another mobile drive at Fellowship Bible Church at 4600 McCann Road in Longview from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

On Jan. 31, Upshur Rural Electric is hosting a blood drive at 1200 W. Tyler St. in Gilmer from 7 a.m. to 11 a.m.

Another blood drive is being held in Athens Feb. 1 from 2 to 6 p.m. at Walmart, located at 1405 E. Tyler St. Also on Feb. 1, there will be another drive in Longview at LeTourneau University’s Health Fare, located at 2100 Mobberly in The Great Room from 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. There will be another drive in Winnsboro Feb. 1 at 719 West Coke Road, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Christus Good Shepherd Medical Center is hosting a mobile drive Feb. 3 at the Emergency Room Parking Area, located at 700 E. Marshall Ave in Longview from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

On Feb. 7, there will be a mobile blood drive in Jacksonville at the Tractor Supply Parking Lot, located at 1626 S. Jackson St. from 2 to 6 p.m. That same day, there will be another drive hosted by Carter BloodCare in Canton from 2 to 6 p.m. at 603 East Hwy 243. Another drive is going on that Monday from 2 to 6 p.m. at the Tractor Supply in Palestine, located at 2200 S. Loop 256.

The United Methodist Church of Frankston will have a blood drive Feb. 9 at their Family Life Center, located at 161 S Weldon in Frankston, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Another mobile drive will be held Feb. 10 at Christus Trinity Mother Frances Clinic, located at 2026 S. Jackson St. in Jacksonville from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Wood County Electric Coop is hosting a blood drive Feb. 11 at 501 South Main Street in Quitman from 7:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

The Athens Masonic Lodge #165 is also hosting a drive on Feb. 12, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at 2030 US Hwy 175E in Athens. That same day, Colfax United Methodist Church is hosting a drive at 181 VZ County Road 4418 in Canton from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Sharon Shrine Jeep Patrol is also hosting a blood drive at the Hampton Inn & Suites Conference Rooms, located at 3044 N. Eastman Rd. on Feb. 17, from 4 to 8 p.m.

On Feb. 18, there will be a blood drive hosted by Carter BloodCare at the Cassity Jones parking lot, located at 1209 Hwy 79 N., from 2 to 6 p.m.

Longview Regional Medical Center is also hosting a blood drive Feb. 21 at the Veteran’s Parking Lot, located at 2901 N. Fourth St. in Longview from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. That same day, there will be another blood drive hosted by Carter BloodCare at the Tractor Supply in Palestine, located at 2200 S Loop 256, from noon to 6 p.m.

Feb. 22, HealthCARE Express in Longview will be hosting a mobile drive in the parking lot, located at 1509 W. Loop 281, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Be prepared to spend at least one hour at each blood drive. It is also recommended to have a meal before donating.

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