By Nick Starling

DALLAS (CBSFW.COM) – North Texas blood donations centers are categorizing the supply they have on hand as “critically low.”

It’s the worst supply they’ve seen in more than a decade, they say.

“I’ve been doing this at the Red Cross for the past 11 years, I’ve never seen anything quite like this before,” said Dan Halyburton, Public Affairs Spokesperson for American Red Cross of North Texas.

Halyburton said they are down to a one-day supply of blood and they haven’t seen levels this low in a decade.

With January already a slow month, the impacts from the pandemic don’t help either, with many people working from home and blood drives at colleges and schools down 60%.

“They’re not on campus in a lot of cases and then in schools, they don’t want a lot of the extra activity of having a blood drive in their school because they are really trying to keep it locked down during COVID,” added Halyburton.

One of the major concerns is as the waiting rooms and beds sit empty, that needed blood is not going to those who need it most.

“Those surgeries can be anything from heart transplants, heart attacks, bypass surgeries and it can be something like women who go into child birth and something doesn’t go exactly right,” said Linda Goelzer, Director of Public Relations for Carter BloodCare.

“When you’re talking about an emergency and blood often times is an absolutely emergency then you’ve got to have a supply on hand,” added Halyburton.

The blood centers have taken precautions such as masking up to ease any hesitation from donors.

Goelzer said 37% of the population can give blood, but only 4% t is doing so.

“Once you get as behind as we now are in the blood supply, it’s really really hard to catch up and get back to where we were at pre-pandemic level,” said Goelzer.

Hoping in time, appointments will fill up with those who can give.

“It’s just a very, very important thing to do,” added Goelzer.

If you would like to donate, click on one of the following links to book an appointment:

American Red Cross 

Carter BloodCare