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(WBIR, Knoxville) - MEDIC Regional Blood Center said it's facing an uphill battle after shortages at the end of last week.

Christi Fightmaster with MEDIC said January is typically a slow month for donations due to cold and flu season, but it's particularly bad this year because of the weather.

She said there's a shortage nationwide, so blood is hard to find on the open market.

On Friday, MEDIC was back ordered on O-negative and B-negative, and it's still struggling to fill the shelves.

Most donations that come in are immediately sent area hospitals, so stocking up is difficult.

O-negative is particularly important because it's used during emergency situations.

"If there was an emergency situation right now, I'm not sure what would happen. That's why it is so important for us to have our inventory built every single day because we have to prepare as though there could be an emergency on a grader scale every single day. We have to be prepared for that," said Fightmaster.

All blood types are needed right now, but MEDIC is specifically asking for O-negative and B-negative.

You can find the donation locations at www.medicblood.org.

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