EXTON, PA — Across the nation, including right here in Pennsylvania, a severe blood shortage is happening. The Red Cross, which supplies 40% of the nation’s blood supply, had to limit blood product distributions to hospitals because of the shortage. This poses a concerning risk to patient care.
To address this urgent need, state Rep. Danielle Friel Otten, D-Chester, says she has partnered with the Red Cross and the Lionville YMCA for a community blood drive on Saturday, June 25. The blood drive will take place from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Lionville YMCA, 100 Devon Drive in Exton.
Interested donors are encouraged to schedule their appointment in advance via the American Red Cross’ website and enter sponsor code “District155” or call 1-800-Red Cross (1-800-733-2767).
“Chester County hospitals, along with hospitals across the nation, are experiencing severe blood shortages. This not only poses a risk to patient care, but it also potentially places our doctors in the difficult position of deciding who receives blood transfusions and who will need to wait until more products become available,” Otten said. “I encourage all healthy and eligible donors to donate blood. And if you’re unable to donate at this event, please spread the word and consider donating at another opportunity. Every donation helps.”
Approximately 36,000 units (a unit is equivalent to one pint) of red blood cells are needed every day in the United States. While blood donations are a critical and integral part of medical care, only about 3% of age-eligible people donate blood yearly. However, one donation can save up to three lives.
Donors of all blood types are needed, especially those with types O negative, B negative and A negative. According to the Red Cross, type O negative is the universal blood type that can be safely transfused to anyone and is often used to treat trauma patients. Because only 7% of people in the U.S. are type O negative, it’s always in great demand and often in short supply.
Most individuals are eligible to donate blood in Pennsylvania if they are:
- In good health.
- 16 years old or older.
- Weigh a minimum of 120 pounds.
For more information about this event, please contact Otten’s district office at 484-200-8259.
For the latest news on everything happening in Chester County and the surrounding area, be sure to follow MyChesCo on Google News.