The American Red Cross says it is facing a critical shortage of type O blood.
According to the American Red Cross, the blood group most needed by hospitals, type O, has less than a two-day supply available for emergency rooms.
“All blood types are urgently needed, but we’re facing a critical shortage of type O blood – the blood group most needed by hospitals,” said Rodney Wilson, communications manager for Red Cross Central Ohio Blood Services. “Because it’s vitally important for hospitals to have type O blood available when every second counts, type O donors are urged to donate now and make a point to donate often.”
In an effort to get more donors, the Red Cross is offering anyone who donates blood or platelets now through June 10 a $5 Amazon gift card.
While just 7% of the U.S. population has type O negative blood, it can be transfused to patients with any blood type and is what hospital staff reach for during emergencies when there isn’t time to determine a patient’s blood type.
Type O positive blood is the most transfused blood type and is also critical in trauma situations, according to the Red Cross.