The American Red Cross confirmed Wednesday a "tentative decision" to limit the organization's operations in the region, eliminating 230 jobs in its Great Lakes Blood Service Region, which includes Lansing.

In a statement Wednesday Chris Hrouda, president of the American Red Cross Biomedical Services, said the organization will "limit its operations — mainly mobile blood drives" beginning in November in the service region, which includes Lansing, Muskegon, Petoskey, Flint, Kalamazoo and Kentwood/Grand Rapids.

"This decision is in response to a continued industry-wide decline in the demand for blood products and the need for consolidation of operations to ensure we can deliver cost-effective and reliable products and services for patients in need," Hrouda said in an email to the State Journal. "These changes would allow us to focus our Biomedical Services in other geographies that generate more concentrated efficiencies and a better economic profile."

Hrouda said 230 jobs will be eliminated in the process, though his statement did not specify a timetable for layoffs.

"We are committed to doing the most we can to help make this proposed transition as smooth as possible, including reaching out to area employers to help affected employees find new jobs," he said.

According to Hrouda, the changes will not affect the availability of Red Cross blood products in Michigan.

"We will continue to collect blood donations at our two fixed sites in Flint and Lansing, as well as in our Southeast Michigan Blood Services Region located in Detroit," Hrouda said.

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