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LOUISVILLE, KY. (WDRB) -- The American Red Cross is facing a familiar problem, as the blood supply across the country and here in Kentuckiana is getting dangerously low.
The Red Cross hopes to change that over the next three days. Tuesday is the first day of their annual three-day blood drive at Churchill Downs.
"I get a call about every three months to come in and donate," says Robyn Senn, who is donating blood.
The table, the little red ball and even the sight of her own blood is all becoming pretty routine for Senn. She has a rare blood type and tries to donate often.
Senn says, "I think it's something I can do to help out our community and help out others in need."
And the American Red Cross says right now the need is just about critical.
"Summer months are generally challenging for blood collection...donors get busy with vacation, summer activities, schools are out of session," says Katy Maloy, with The American Red Cross.
And all of the summer activity has left the local blood supply low for the red cross and local hospitals. Maloy says,"We work very hard and very closely with our hospital partners to insure that surgeries go ahead as scheduled and we need a consistent flow of donors to insure that happens."
Dr. Elpidio Pena is Medical Director of Transfusion Services with Norton Health care. Dr. Pena says,"There are real consequences to a low blood supply."
Dr. Pena also tells us exactly what will happen if the blood supply gets too low. He explains,"When the blood supply gets very low...it have consequences and the first thing that happens is surgery gets canceled...chemotherapy treatments gets delayed."
But the red cross is hoping the generosity of people like Robyn Senn will prevent that from happening and so does she.
"We're hoping to see ah...900 donors over the next three days...three hundred donors a day," says Maloy.
"Because one day I might be on the receiving end and might need to get blood so have to keep the supply going," says Senn.
There's also a little incentive for anyone who donates over the next three days.
There's also a little incentive for anyone who donates over the next three days. The red cross is giving away a kings island ticket and chance to win box at Churchill to donors.