Facing the single greatest challenge to the blood supply it’s ever seen, the Oklahoma Blood Institute is urging all able Oklahomans to donate blood immediately. Due to COVID-19 impacts, more than a month’s worth of blood collections have been lost. Hospital usage is rising as surgeries return to normal levels, and – without rapidly increased donation rates – blood supplies will soon hit crisis levels. “As surgeries resume throughout Oklahoma, the blood supply is dangerously low. As the state’s leading voice for physicians, the Oklahoma State Medical Association is committed to fostering better health for all Oklahomans,” said George Monks, MD, president of the Oklahoma State Medical Association. “Part of this is ensuring our healthcare facilities have access to the blood desperately needed to help patients throughout the state recover from injuries, disease, and life-saving surgeries. We are proud to partner with the Oklahoma Blood Institute in this effort.” Blood has no substitute and is perishable, with a shelf life of just 42 days. Blood supplies must be constantly replenished. The Oklahoma Blood Institute provides more than 90% of the blood to the state, requiring 1,200 donors each day to keep a healthy stock of blood on the shelf. “In this time of need, such as we’ve never seen before, we’re calling one and all to respond with that remarkable Oklahoma Standard we’ve always seen from our generous donors,” said John Armitage, MD, president and CEO of the Oklahoma Blood Institute. Donors can visit OBI.org or call 877-340-8777 to schedule an appointment. Most people over age 15 and in good health can donate. The process takes about an hour.