SAVANNAH — The supply of type O negative blood at the American Red Cross has dropped to critically low levels.
Type O negative blood always is in high demand because it can be transfused to patients with any blood type, especially in emergency situations.
Type O negative donors are needed now to help prevent the type O negative blood supply from declining further.
“The American Red Cross is reaching out to eligible blood donors, sponsors and community leaders to ask them to help recruit type O negative blood donations to help meet the needs of patients in our community,” said Randy Edwards, chief executive officer of the American Red Cross Southern Blood Services Region.
While all blood types are needed during the summer months, the Red Cross urges those eligible donors with O negative blood type to make and keep appointments in the upcoming days to help restore the blood supply.
A shortage of type O negative blood often occurs during the summer months when fewer donors are giving because of summer vacations and schools approaching summer break are hosting fewer drives.
Every two seconds, someone in the United States needs blood.
The Red Cross Southern Blood Services Region provides lifesaving blood to more than 120 hospitals and must have 1,200 people give blood and platelets each weekday to meet hospital demand.
Accident victims, as well as patients with cancer, sickle cell disease, blood disorders and other illnesses receive lifesaving transfusions every day.
There is no substitute for blood and volunteer donors are the only source.
Individuals who are 17 years old, or 16 with parental permission in some states, meet weight and height requirements of 110 pounds or more, depending on their height, and are in generally good health may be eligible to give blood.
Bring your Red Cross blood donor card or other form of positive ID when you come to donate.
Eligible blood donors are asked to call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or go to redcrossblood.org to find a blood drive and to make an appointment.