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Poor U.S. Economy Affects Blood Donations

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The ailing economy is causing a decrease in the number of workplace-related blood donations in many areas of the United States.

For example, 33 corporate blood drives were canceled from June through August, resulting in 1,700 fewer units of blood collected, a spokeswoman with the Badger-Hawkeye Red Cross in Wisconsin told the Associated Press. The state's unemployment rate has doubled to 8.7 percent in the last year.

Michigan has the highest unemployment rate (15.6 percent) in the nation, and the Michigan Community Blood Centers has seen a 15 percent to 20 percent drop in blood donations.

"We are seeing a direct effect of the recession," spokeswoman Toni Gould told the AP. "So many businesses and factories are closing, and they accounted for a large share of mobile drives."

Despite the decline in blood donations in certain regions, there hasn't yet been a significant overall national decrease, according to the American Red Cross.

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