More than 6,000 Red Cross blood drives have been canceled already this year due to the coronavirus, resulting in a blood shortage. This is how Idahoans can help during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Red Cross account manager for the Idaho Falls area Angela Ragan says canceling that many blood drives "results in about 200,000 units of blood that have not been collected. So, we are definitely facing a critical shortage."

With drives being canceled, donor centers are open for longer hours and adding extra days days so as many people as possible can donate.

To help during the shortage, frequent donor Craig Taylor is giving blood as often as possible.

He says, "It makes me feel good and it's food for the soul, and the soul feeds the spirit, heart and mind. It's just a good thing, and you're helping others."

It's not just Taylor helping out.

Monday afternoon, the Idaho Falls blood donor center was packed full of people which has been a trend during the coronavirus outbreak. It's extremely important that people continue to come and donate blood.

To make sure those who donate are safe, the Red Cross implemented new protocol to follow CDC guidelines.

Ragan says, "We take their temperatures when they walk in the building. They have to be under 99.5 [degrees Fahrenheit] in order to donate."

Donors use hand sanitizer, donation chairs and waiting room chairs are spaced at least six feet apart, and everything donors touch is sanitized before the next person is allowed in.

For Taylor, those extra precautions should be enough to get more donors in the doors.

Taylor says, "People need all the help they can get because of the blood shortage currently because of the coronavirus going on."

It's that attitude that has Red Cross officials excited.

Ragan says, "It just renews my faith in people. People are good and they do want to help as much as they can. We've put out the call and people are responding."

For donors like Taylor, it's an easy decision.

He says, "It's the right thing to do."

Below are listed upcoming drives in Pocatello and Idaho Falls:


WHERE: American Red Cross in the Pine Ridge Mall (come in by Planet Fitness)

4155 Yellowstone 

Pocatello, ID

Tuesday, March 24th, 1 p.m. -6 p.m.

Wednesday, March 25th, 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.

Thursday, March 26th, 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.

Wednesday, April 1st, 10 a.m. - 3 p.m.


WHERE: Idaho Falls Donation Center

1165 E 17th Street

Idaho Falls, ID

Tuesday, March 24th, 1 p.m. - 6 p.m.

Wednesday, March 25th, 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.

Thursday, March 26th, 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.

Tuesday, March 31st, 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.

For more information on Red Cross' fight against COVID-19 or what to expect when you donate, visit:


(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.