STATE – New Jersey Blood Services (NJBS), a division of New York Blood Center (NYBC), will hold special blood drives in the donor room at 2279 South Avenue. in Scotch Plains and 167 New Street, New Brunswick on Wednesday, Dec. 22 and Thursday, Dec. 23. The Scotch Plains donor room is open from 11:30 a.m. to 8 p.m., while the New Brunswick drive runs from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. These unique drives will be open particularly to individuals who have type “O” blood.
Each type “O” donor at the Scotch Plains drive will receive a uniquely designed T-shirt. Type Os are asked to bring a friend with any blood type to donate, who will also receive a shirt, and meet other generous people willing to help NJBS in their mission to save lives.
The idea for the drive is to increase blood donations at this time of year. Type O blood is regularly in short supply, but especially during the busy holiday season when schools are on recess and student donations decrease, adding to the loss of donations from people on vacation.
According to NJBS officials, type O negative blood, which is found in just 6 percent of the population, is needed more often by patients. People with O negative blood are known as universal donors because their blood can be transfused into virtually anyone.
Type O negative blood is needed frequently in emergency rooms and trauma units and can also be transfused into people that have O negative blood. It is also used for exchange transfusions for newborn babies and pregnant women, and for premature babies in intensive care units.
Individuals with type O-positive blood can give to 85 percent of the population, including those with types A-positive, B-positive, AB-positive and O-positive. Although O-positive is the most common blood type, shortages occur because of its value to so many patients.
While the appeal for the Dec. 22 and 23 drives has been made to individuals with types O-negative and O-positive blood, all blood types are asked to donate that day.
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