What to Know
- The New York Blood Center says it is desperately in need of donations, saying the region's supply has never been lower
- Critical blood shortage stems from decline in donor base and increased demand for blood, it says
- For information on where to donate or how to set up your own drive, visit www.nybloodcenter.org/blood or call 1-800-933-2566
The New York Blood Center is "urgently" asking for help, saying the region's supply has never been lower in a public plea for assistance Friday.
Describing supply as critically low, NYBC says it needs a seven-day inventory of all blood types, one that is continually replenished, to maintain a safe amount. Right now, reserves are below that minimum, the organization says.
Declines in overall donor base, first-time donors and high school and college donors as well as increased demand have contributed to the crisis, NYBC says. Nearly 2,000 donations are needed each day in New York and New Jersey alone -- and it only takes an hour to donate. A single donation can save multiple lives.
People in need include cancer patients, accident, burn or trauma victims, newborn babies and their mothers, transplant recipients, surgery patients and more. Donors with O-negative blood type, often called "universal donors," are especially encouraged to give blood since theirs can be used for emergencies, NYBC says.
Here's how you can help:
- Donate blood or platelets at a donor center
- Donate at a mobile blood drive
- Host a blood drive in your community or at your organization
- Educate others in your family, community and organization about blood donations and encourage them to donate themselves and/or host a drive