LifeShare Blood Centers reports the local blood supply has reached a critically-low level.

Reports in recent weeks indicate the patient use of blood has been higher than blood donation, resulting in a supply of less than two days for nearly all blood types.

If you're able to give blood, call the nearest LifeShare location or mobile blood drive and make a donation as soon as possible. All blood types are needed and being used by patients daily. In the LifeShare service area, several hundred blood donations are needed each day to fill patient needs.

The largest use of donated blood is for patients undergoing cancer treatment. Others may need a blood transfusion as a result of a blood disorder, surgery, complications during childbirth or a traumatic accident.

"Approximately one in seven people entering a hospital require a blood transfusion," said LifeShare spokeswoman Tina Hooper. "If we, as a community, expect medical teams to be able to help us in the best way possible during our time of illness or injury, we must make regular blood donations. During this critical time, we are alerting the community out of concern for everyone in the area who expects this life-saving resource to be available when they need it."

On a personal note, I know first-hand how important these donations are. Following my c-section when my daughter was born in 2008, I suffered from a serious iron deficiency. I needed three pints of blood before I left the hospital. If the supply hadn't been there, I don't know what would have happened to me. It's something you just can't plan for.

Here's a list of LifeShare locations in and near the Shreveport-Bossier area, so you can call to schedule your donation:

Alexandria
2051 North Mall Drive
Alexandria, LA 71301
318-445-7439
800-256-7439

Monroe
2909 Kilpatrick Boulevard
Monroe, LA 71201
318-322-4445
800-256-4445

Shreveport
8910 Linwood Avenue
Shreveport, LA 71106
318-673-1471
800-256-5433

Bossier City
1523 Doctors Drive
Bossier City, LA 71111
318-742-4636

Texarkana
1321 College Drive
Texarkana, TX 75503
903-794-3173
800-264-5456