Emergency need remains; call for type O blood donors  now

NEW JERSEY — Thousands of people responded to the emergency call for blood and platelet donations issued by the American Red Cross in early July. Still, there continues to be an emergency need for donors of all blood types, especially type O.

The Red Cross is urging donors to give now to address a severe blood shortage. Blood donations are being distributed to hospitals faster than they are coming in, and right now there is less than a five-day blood supply on hand. The Red Cross strives to keep a five-day supply of blood to meet the needs of patients and to be prepared for emergencies that require significant volumes of donated blood products.

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“Patients don’t get a summer break from the need for lifesaving treatments, so it is critical that hospitals have access to blood products each and every day,” said Alana Mauger, communications manager of the Penn Jersey Blood Services Region. “We sincerely appreciate those who have responded to the call to help save lives, but the emergency need remains. Those who haven’t rolled up a sleeve to give are urged to do so today.”

There is a critical need for type O blood, which plays an important role in ongoing patient care and emergencies. O positive is the most transfused and can be given to patients with any Rh-positive blood type. Meanwhile, O negative is the universal blood type and can be given to any patient. It’s what emergency room personnel reach for when there is no time to determine the blood type of patients in the most serious situations.

Those who come to donate blood or platelets July 30 through Aug. 30, 2018, will receive a $5 Amazon.com Gift Card via email. (Restrictions apply; see amazon.com/gc-legal. More information and details are available at RedCrossBlood.org/Together.)

Donors of all blood types are urged to make an appointment to give now using the free American Red Cross Blood Donor App, by visiting RedCrossBlood.org or by calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767). 

Upcoming blood donation opportunities July 26-Aug. 15 in Union County are:

Berkeley Heights
August 6: 2:00 to 7:00 p.m., Berkeley Heights YMCA, 550 Springfield Ave.

Cranford
August 10: 2:00 to 7:00 p.m., Calvary Tabernacle, 69 Myrtle St.

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