UK HealthCare

'UK at the Half': The Nationwide Blood Shortage Crisis

Rozan Whaley works inside the UK Chandler Hospital's blood bank. Mark Cornelison | UK Photo
Rozan Whaley works inside the UK Chandler Hospital's blood bank. Mark Cornelison | UK Photo

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Feb. 16, 2022) Across the country, hospital systems are struggling with a new crisis brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic and a long run of bad weather: a shortage of donor blood.

In this “UK at the Half,” two UK HealthCare physicians explain why blood donations are so crucial not only to the hospital system but to the community. Morgan McCoy, M.D., Ph.D, is the medical director of UK HealthCare’s blood banks, and Zachary Warriner, M.D., is a UK HealthCare trauma surgeon.

As the medical center that cares for the sickest and most injured patients in the region, UK HealthCare uses a substantial amount of blood products. Donated blood is used for many types of patients: those coming in with trauma, premature babies, transplant recipients, cancer patients and more.

In Lexington, blood donations can be made at KBC’s two donor centers in Beaumont and Andover. To find donation sites or mobile drives outside of Lexington, or to schedule an appointment, visit or call 800-775-2522. Face coverings are required while donating. There is no wait time to donate after receiving the COVID-19 vaccine.

“UK at the Half” airs during halftime of each UK football and basketball game broadcast on radio and is hosted by UK Public Relations and Marketing. To hear the “UK at the Half” interview, click on the play button above. 

The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.