Roll Up Your Sleeves: Blood Donations Needed

Red Cross low on types O, B and A negative.

Posted: 07/16/2013 12:42 PM EDT

Blood donations dipped about 10 percent in June and the American Red Cross is requesting blood donors stat.

“We’re asking for the public’s help now to prevent a more serious shortage,” Red Cross spokesperson Stephanie Millian said in a release. “Each day donations come up short, less blood is available for patients in need. It’s the blood products on the shelves today that help save lives in an emergency.”

June had about 50,000 fewer donations than expected.

Though the Red Cross is asking for people of all blood types to donate, those with types O negative, B negative and A negative blood are especially encouraged to give. Type O negative is the universal blood type and can be transfused to anyone. Types A negative and B negative can be transfused to Rh positive or negative patients.

For more information about donating blood, call 800-RED CROSS (800-733-2767) or visit the American Red Cross website. To donate, people must be at least 17 years old (16 with parental consent in some states), weigh at least 110 pounds and be in good health. High school students and other donors 18 years of age and younger also have to meet height and weight requirements.

Read more about giving blood at BlackHealthMatters.Com.

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(Photo: GettyImages)

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