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Strong donor turnout urged by American Red Cross

Area American Red Cross Blood Services officials are urging strong donor turnout in coming days to help replenish seriously low supplies of Type O negative blood.
“As of this morning, we have less than a day’s supply of Type O, A and B negative blood in reserve,” said John Nobiletti, MD, PhD, medical director, Greater Alleghenies Region, Red Cross Blood Services. “Without increased blood donations, area patients can be directly affected.”
He explained that Type O negative is the universal blood type for red blood cells. Type O negative blood cells may be transfused to individuals of other blood types in an emergency; however, just seven percent of the population has Type O negative blood.
There are two upcoming area blood drives scheduled, including:
• Friday, January 18 from noon to 6 p.m. at Sinking Valley Presbyterian Church, Hileman Road and
• Wednesday, January 23 from 1 to 7 p.m. at Emmanuel Baptist Church, Tyrone.
Giving blood is a safe process, is easy and takes very little time.
Individuals may also visit the Altoona Donation Center to give blood. The center is open on Tuesdays from noon to 6 p.m. and is located on Kettle Road, two blocks off E. Pleasant Valley Blvd. Call 941-8385 with questions.
Also, individuals are able to schedule an appointment by calling 1-800-Give-Life (1-800-448-3543).
The Greater Alleghenies Region of the American Red Cross Blood Services strongly urges anyone who is eligible to give blood to call as soon as possible to schedule an appointment to donate or visit www.redcrosslife.org or www.givelife.org for a schedule of upcoming area blood drives.
Although giving blood takes very little time and about 60 percent of the people in America are eligible to donate blood, only five percent do.
Anyone at least 17-years-of-age, weighing 110 pounds or more and feeling in good health may be eligible to donate blood.
Individuals with donor eligibility questions should call the nursing collections office at 1-800-542-5663.