(Photo From State Senator Patrick Joyce's Office)

Due to the cancellation of blood drives around the state because of COVID-19, blood centers are facing a decrease in blood donations. State Senator Patrick Joyce, who represents a portion of southern Grundy County, said our state and nation can't afford a blood shortage during the coronavirus pandemic.

The American Red Cross Donor Center says it is closely monitoring the outbreak of COVID-19 and taking every precaution to protect donors from contracting COVID-19 while donating blood. There is also no known risk of the safety of the nation's blood supply, only the sufficiency of the supply at this time.

The Red Cross is also encouraging donors to use online resources to schedule their visits and fill out paperwork the day of donation. For questions or concerns, contact the American Red Cross Donor Center at (800) 448-3543 or visit redcross.org.