Red Cross Facing Critical Shortage of Type O Blood

May 15, 2019

The Red Cross is facing a critical shortage of type O blood.

The organization is urging eligible donors of all types, but particularly type O blood, to give. Ronnika McFall is with Red Cross communications. She says the agency collected about 11,500 fewer type O donations than needed.

Credit Piedmont Healthcare

“Well in April, spring break schedules and end of school year activities contributed to a low turnout of blood donors,” McFall said. “In addition high schools and colleges, which account for about 20 percent of blood donations during the school year, begin to host fewer blood drives in late spring as school years come to a close.”

McFall says currently, there is only a 2-day supply of type O blood on the shelves, much less than the ideal 5-day supply needed.

“Type O blood is the blood group most needed by hospitals. Type O negative is the universal blood type and can be transfused to any patient who needs blood. It’s the blood type emergency room staff turn to and reach for first in a trauma situation where there is no time to match a person’s blood type.

But she says the donor pool is relatively small.

“Just seven percent of the US population has type O negative blood. Type O positive is the most transfused blood type and it’s also critical in trauma situations.”

The Red Cross is offering a $5 Amazon gift card to all donors who come in by June 10.

To find a blood drive near you or to schedule an appointment, use the free Blood Donor App, visit the Red Cross website, or call 1-800- Red Cross or 800-733-2767.

Area Blood Drives:

Clarke

Athens

5/16/2019: 8:45 a.m. - 3:45 p.m., Athens Blood Donation Center, Clark Crossing Shopping Ctr

Clarke

Athens

5/17/2019: 8:45 a.m. - 3:45 p.m., Athens Blood Donation Center, Clark Crossing Shopping Ctr

5/18/2019: 7:45 a.m. - 2:45 p.m., Athens Blood Donation Center, Clark Crossing Shopping Ctr

5/19/2019: 7:45 a.m. - 2:45 p.m., Athens Blood Donation Center, Clark Crossing Shopping Ctr

5/20/2019: 12:45 p.m. - 7:45 p.m., Athens Blood Donation Center, Clark Crossing Shopping Ctr

5/21/2019: 12:45 p.m. - 7:45 p.m., Athens Blood Donation Center, Clark Crossing Shopping Ctr

Upcoming blood drives:

Jackson

Pendergrass

5/21/2019: 8 a.m. - 12 p.m., Ten Cate Pendergrass, 365 South Holland Drive

Madison

Danielsville

5/21/2019: 2 p.m. - 7 p.m., Madison County Library, 1315 Highway 98 West

Clarke

Athens

5/22/2019: 12:45 p.m. - 7:45 p.m., Athens Blood Donation Center, Clark Crossing Shopping Ctr

Clarke

Athens

5/23/2019: 8:45 a.m. - 3:45 p.m., Athens Blood Donation Center, Clark Crossing Shopping Ctr

Clarke

Athens

5/24/2019: 8:45 a.m. - 3:45 p.m., Athens Blood Donation Center, Clark Crossing Shopping Ct

Clarke

Athens

5/25/2019: 7:45 a.m. - 2:45 p.m., Athens Blood Donation Center, Clark Crossing Shopping Ctr

5/26/2019: 7:45 a.m. - 2:45 p.m., Athens Blood Donation Center, Clark Crossing Shopping Ctr

5/27/2019: 7:45 a.m. - 2:45 p.m., Athens Blood Donation Center, Clark Crossing Shopping Ctr

5/28/2019: 10 a.m. - 3 p.m., Athens Technical College- Student Ctr Spring, 800 US Hwy 29 North

5/28/2019: 12:45 p.m. - 7:45 p.m., Athens Blood Donation Center, Clark Crossing Shopping Ctr