OHIO COUNTY, W.Va. (WTRF) – Flu season has arrived, and while you know the risk of getting sick this time of year increases, it also has an effect on our blood supply.

Officials with the American Red Cross tell us that even though we’re still very early into the flu season, they are already seeing some effects.

The Red Cross knows and plans for an impact on the supply from the holiday season. However, they’re currently seeing a drop in donations, and the flu is causing some staffing issues as employees are out of work sick.

Many Americans are in the process of getting flu shots, but there does appear to be some confusion about whether or not you can donate if you get one.

“We’re aware that people are trying to battle the effects of the flu this year by receiving their flu vaccine, and as a result we’re hearing that people are wondering whether or not it’s still OK to give blood then if they’ve received a flu shot. Absolutely, there is no waiting period to donate blood after receiving a flu shot.”

SHARON KESSELRING, Executive Director of American Red Cross of the Ohio River Valley