It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.
Please white-list or disable AboveTopSecret.com in your ad-blocking tool.
Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.
A number of blood centers are reporting an unusual drop in collections because too many potential donors are sick with the H1N1 virus, or swine flu. Some blood drives in high schools and corporate offices have had to be scaled back or canceled because of high levels of absenteeism.
Another problem: Some centers say a growing number of donors are calling a day or two after giving blood to say they've come down with flu-like symptoms, forcing the centers to dispose of the blood as part of government regulations. Researchers in a government-funded study are testing samples of these donors' blood for viremia, the medical term for virus in the blood.
Unlike infectious diseases such as HIV/AIDS, hepatitis C and West Nile virus, colds and flu aren't believed to be transmitted by blood. But some studies indicate that more virulent strains can be present in the blood before flu symptoms show up. "When you get into strains that are pandemic, the rules don't necessarily apply," says Matthew Kuehnert, director of the Office of Blood, Organ and other Tissue Safety at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.