Blood supply critically low, donations needed

COVID-19 has upended a number of processes, including blood donation efforts.

Meanwhile, demand for blood donations remains, leading to some significant shortages.

Stanford Blood Center said Thursday that it is facing a critical shortage of O+ blood, particularly as elective surgeries resume. Nationwide, the country is facing an O+ shortage, the organization said.

O- blood is also in high demand, according to the group’s website.

“We’ve had an increase in demand for blood products and currently only have a few days’ worth of O positive on hand,” said Ross Coyle from Stanford Blood Center.

The organization noted that several recent patients have required large amounts of blood. One donation can support up to three patients in need the group said.

“Over the past 10 days, patients at Stanford hospitals have required close to 1,200 units (pints) of red blood cells (RBCs), with more than 600 units being O+ blood,” said Dr. Tho Pham, Chief Medical Officer at Stanford Blood Center.

While O+ blood is the most in-demand at this time, hospitals need all blood types.

Stanford Blood Center is also running COVID-19 antibody tests on donated blood, through October 15.

If you want to donate, make an appointment here or by calling 888-723-7831.