Urgent Need for Type O Negative Blood
Recent severe winter storms across the U.S. have put additional pressure on the nation’s blood supply, which is already trying to recover from low donor turnout over the holidays.
With heavy rain and areas of flooding in the west to high winds, record snow, avalanches and ice across big chunks of the rest of the country, the number of people able to come out and give blood is significantly impacted in many parts of the country. And yet the need for blood remains.
Severe weather can disrupt blood center operations, even if that weather is hundreds of miles away. United Blood Services is part of Blood Systems, one of the nation’s oldest and largest non-profit community blood service providers. As members of that network, United Blood Services here in San Angelo is stepping forward to help its sister communities that are in the path of severe weather. We still need our community to step up and help out with a blood donation to meet the needs of the hospital patients we serve. Donations have dropped off by about 50% with blood supply levels falling to one day supply on hand when three days is adequate.
All blood types are welcome with type O-negative most urgently needed. O-negative is the universal blood type and can be given to patients of any blood type. It is often used for premature infants and in emergency situations when there is no time to type and crossmatch the patient. Platelet donors are needed as well. Platelets are used in the treatment of patients undergoing chemotherapy. Their shelf life is very short—only 5 days—while whole blood or red cell donations can last 42 days.
Donors are encouraged to make appointments by call 877-827-4376 or going online to www.bloodhero.com. Volunteer donors must be at least 16, weigh a minimum of 110 pounds and be in good health. Additional height and weight requirements apply to donors 22 and younger. 16 and 17 year old donors must have signed permission from a parent or guardian.
Blood donation takes about an hour from check-in to refreshments. Save about 20 minutes by completing the Fast Track Health History on the same day they donate. Go to www.unitedbloodservices.org and click on green FAST TRACK ARROW.
United Blood Services 2020 W. Beauregard San Angelo, TX 76901
Hours of Operation:Mon, Tues and Thurs Noon – 6pm; Wed and Fri 8am – 1.30pm; Sat 9am – 1.30pm
Mobile Blood Drive:
Friday, Jan 13 Sterling City High School 1.30pm – 7pm Contact Jeannie Sparks at 378-5821.
Call 877-827-4376 to schedule an appointment or for more information.