The American Red Cross (ARC) is experiencing an emergency blood shortage as the nation faces the lowest number of people giving blood in 20 years. To help alleviate the shortage and ensure lifesaving medical procedures are not delayed Alameda Health System (AHS) held two blood drives in January.

Blood donations can be used for patients of all ages including accident and burn victims, heart surgery and organ transplant patients, and those battling cancer. According to the ARC, every two seconds someone in the United States needs blood.

“As a health care organization with the only adult Level 1 Trauma Center in the East Bay, we know having a sufficient supply of blood can be a matter of life or death and we want to do our part to support our patients in every way possible,” said Dr. Nikita Joshi, medical director of emergency medicine at Alameda Hospital.

The two AHS blood drives that resulted in nearly 70 units of blood were held at Alameda Hospital and coordinated by Public Affairs and Community Engagement. Future blood drives are being planned for the Spring and Summer.

If you would like to find a blood drive in your area, visit and search for blood drive locations by your zip code.

For information about future drives or on how to get involved contact Public Affairs and Community Engagement at