Critical Type O Blood Shortage: Red Cross Urgently Needs Donors

(UNDATED) – The American Red Cross has extended its urgent call
for donors of all blood types to give blood or platelets. With influenza escalating across the country and preventing some donors from giving, and winter weather threatening to cancel blood drives, the Red Cross now has a critical shortage of type O blood and urgently needs donors to restock the shelves.

O So Needed

Currently, the Red Cross has less than a three-day supply of type O blood available for patient emergencies and medical treatments. Type O positive blood is the most transfused blood type and can be given to Rh-positive patients of any blood type. While just 7% of the US population has type O negative blood, it can be transfused to patients with any blood type and is what hospital staff reach for during emergencies when there isn’t time to determine a patient’s blood type.

Help Replenish the Blood Supply

Every day, the Red Cross must collect nearly 13,000 blood donations and more than 2,600 platelet donations for patients who rely on blood to survive. In Indiana Ohio Region alone, the Red Cross needs 350 donors each day to support patients being treated at 80 area hospitals.

Shortfalls in donations can cause delays in essential medical care for patients like 12-year-old Dagan Hawkins. Diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia in November, Dagan has required platelet and blood transfusions during his cancer treatments.

“There was a time when they needed to have blood products delivered from another hospital because they were unavailable there,” said Dustin Hawkins, Dagan’s father.

Donors of all blood types – especially types O positive and O negative – are urged to make an appointment to give blood or platelets now using the Red Cross Blood Donor App, visiting RedCrossBlood.org, calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or enabling the Blood Donor Skill on any Alexa Echo device.

Upcoming Blood Donation Opportunities Locally:

Lawrence County
Bedford

  • 2/4/2020: 1 p.m. – 6 p.m., First Baptist Church, 1515 20th Street

Martin County
Loogootee

  • 2/6/2020: 2 p.m. – 7 p.m., St. Johns Catholic Church, 408 Church Street

Shoals

  • 2/5/2020: 2 p.m. – 7 p.m., Shoals Christian Church, 602 N. Main Street

Monroe County
Bloomington

  • 1/22/2020: 12 p.m. – 6 p.m., Bloomington Blood Donation Center, 1600 W. 3rd St.
  • 1/23/2020: 10:30 a.m. – 3 p.m., Indiana University Cyberinfrastructure Building, 2709 East 10th Street
  • 1/23/2020: 12 p.m. – 5 p.m., Indiana University Wells Library, 1320 E. 10th Street
  • 1/25/2020: 8 a.m. – 2 p.m., Bloomington Blood Donation Center, 1600 W. 3rd St.
  • 1/27/2020: 11 a.m. – 4 p.m., Indiana University – Indiana Memorial Union, 900 E. 7th Street
  • 1/29/2020: 12 p.m. – 6 p.m., Bloomington Blood Donation Center, 1600 W. 3rd St.
  • 1/29/2020: 3 p.m. – 8 p.m., Harmony School, 909 E Second St.
  • 2/1/2020: 8 a.m. – 2 p.m., Bloomington Blood Donation Center, 1600 W. 3rd St.
  • 2/5/2020: 12 p.m. – 6 p.m., Bloomington Blood Donation Center, 1600 W. 3rd St.
  • 2/8/2020: 8 a.m. – 2 p.m., Bloomington Blood Donation Center, 1600 W. 3rd St.
  • 2/8/2020: 9 a.m. – 3 p.m., Indiana University – Indiana Memorial Union, 900 E. 7th Street
  • 2/10/2020: 11 a.m. – 4 p.m., Indiana University – Indiana Memorial Union, 900 E. 7th Street
  • 2/11/2020: 11 a.m. – 4 p.m., Indiana University Willkie Residence Center, 150 N. Rose Street
  • 2/12/2020: 12 p.m. – 6 p.m., Bloomington Blood Donation Center, 1600 W. 3rd St.
  • 2/13/2020: 2 p.m. – 7 p.m., First Presbyterian Church, 221 E. 6th Street
  • 2/14/2020: 11 a.m. – 5 p.m., St Paul Catholic Center, 1413 E 17th St

Bartholomew County
Columbus

  • 1/28/2020: 1 p.m. – 6 p.m., Bartholomew County Library, 536 5th Street
  • 2/7/2020: 9 a.m. – 2 p.m., Developmental Services Inc., 2920 10th Street

Brown County
Nashville

  • 1/29/2020: 2 p.m. – 7 p.m., Parkview Church of the Nazarene, 1750 East State Road 46

How to donate blood

All blood types are needed to ensure a reliable supply for patients. A blood donor card or driver’s license or two other forms of identification are required at check-in. Individuals who are 17 years of age in most states (16 with parental consent where allowed by state law), weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors 18 years of age and younger also have to meet certain height and weight requirements.

Blood and platelet donors can save time at their next donation by using RapidPass ® to complete their pre-donation reading and health history questionnaire online, on the day of their donation, before arriving at the blood drive. To get started, follow the instructions at RedCrossBlood.org/RapidPass or use the Blood Donor App.

About the American Red Cross

The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40% of the nation’s blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or cruzrojaamericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.

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