As the universal blood type, O-negative can be given to anyone in need. Between dangerous weather, a worse-than-expected flu season, and the ongoing requirement of hospital patients, the shortage of O-negative blood is a remarkably serious issue.
Making matters even more dire is a corresponding severe shortage of blood platelets, which have only a five-day shelf life. Cancer patients in particular require regular donations of platelets, primarily to ease the side-effects of various treatments.
To support hospitals – and, by extension, their family, friends, and neighbors in need – residents may donate at an open, Community Blood Services drive in their local area.
Community Blood Services is holding donation events in the following counties:
- New Jersey: Bergen, Essex, Hudson, Mercer, Middlesex, Morris, Ocean, Passaic, Somerset, Sussex, Union, Warren
- New York: New York, Orange
Healthy individuals age 16 or older, who weigh at least 110 pounds, may donate blood; 16- and 17-year-olds must have signed consent forms (available atwww.communitybloodservices.com) and proof of birth date. Donors should eat a moderate meal prior to donating, and also bring identification that features their signature.
On occasion, last-minute changes to scheduling for a donation event will occur. As a result, it is recommended that anyone planning to donate blood at one of Community Blood Services’ January donation events call toll-free, at 201-251-3703, to confirm timing and location details.
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