The NHS urges people with O negative blood to check if their family members have it too and encourage them to donate.
There is a huge demand for the blood because it is universal and can be given to anyone in need, regardless of their own type.
But it is also the rarest, which means that the demand is much greater than the supply.
NHS Blood and Transplantation (NHSBT) said that hospitals need an increasing amount of O-negative blood that can be used for car accident victims and for newborn or premature babies.
O negative now accounts for 14 percent of all blood supplied to hospitals, the highest level ever, even though only eight percent of the population naturally has it.
Sebastian Cockerill, six, met 43-year-old Andrew Spence from Corby in Northamptonshire, whose blood saved Seb's life when he was born prematurely. The two hugged each other when they met
Seb, from Sudbury in Suffolk, was born 12 weeks early and needed several blood transfusions
& # 39; We need an increasing proportion of our blood donors to be O-negative to meet hospital demand & # 39 ;, said Mike Stredder, NHSBT blood donation director.
& # 39; If you are negative, talk to your family and share your story. There is a one in three chance that they are also negative.
& # 39; O negative is essential for saving human lives in emergency situations, as the red blood cells can be given to almost anyone. & # 39;
NHSBT said that the long-term demand for O-negative is mainly driven by the need to replace O-negative with a rare blood type, called Ro.
Ro, a blood type of the subtype, is more common in people with a black background and only two percent of regular blood donors have Ro.
WHAT ARE THE DIFFERENT BLOOD GROUPS AND HOW CAN YOU FIND YOU?
There are four main blood groups – A, B, AB and O. Your blood type is determined by the genes that you inherit from your parents.
Each group can be RhD positive or RhD negative, which means that there are a total of eight blood groups.
The percentage of donors with each blood type is:
- O positive: 35%
- O negative: 13%
- A positive: 30%
- A negative: 8%
- B positive: 8%
- B negative: 2%
- AB positive: 2%
- AB negative: 1%
The only way to find out your blood type is by donating blood.
Most people can give blood, but only 4 percent actually do it.
There is an increase in the number of people with sickle cell disease with Ro blood who need regular transfusions.
NHSBT is also attractive to new male donors after revealing the number of men giving their blood in England has fallen by about a quarter in the last five years.
It said that male blood, which is higher in iron than in women, is able to help more patients with each donation.
Sebastian Cockerill, now six years old, was born by an emergency caesarean section 12 weeks early on 25 weeks of pregnancy.
His bone marrow was not mature enough to produce enough red blood cells to keep him alive.
He received several life-saving blood transfusions at the neonatal intensive care unit at Luton and Dunstable University Hospital, including an O-negative blood from 43-year-old Andrew Spence, from Corby in Northamptonshire.
Seb and mother Helen, 41, from Sudbury in Suffolk, have now met Mr. Spence.
Seb gave him a big hug and handed him a card that said: & # 39; To Andrew, thank you for giving me some of your blood. & # 39;
Hospitals encourage people with O-negative blood to check with their family if they have the same type if the supply does not meet the demand. O-negative can be used with newborn or prematurely born babies. Pictured, Helen Cockerill with Seb when he was born prematurely
Mrs. Cockerill, pictured with Seb and Mr. Spence when they met, said: & I don't think people understand how important O negative blood is. Relatives of people who are negative – go out and get tested & # 39;
Seb said: & # 39; The blood was in the veins of Andrew and it has disappeared in my veins. People should donate blood and save lives like Andrew did to me. & # 39;
M. Spence said: & # 39; The day was fantastic – what a great, emotional experience. Seb and his mother Helen were wonderful. He really is a remarkable young man. & # 39;
Mrs. Cockerill said: & Seb was absolutely excited to meet Andrew and he asked a few times when we will see him again.
& # 39; Seb would not have survived without Andrew and the other donors.
& # 39; He finished school the first year. He loves Lego and spends a lot of time playing with his friends and cousins.
& # 39; It's so wonderful to see after such a frightening start to his life. & # 39;
She added: & I don't think people understand how important O negative blood is. Relatives of people who are negative – please go out and get tested. & # 39;
WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOUR DAPTISES?
Hospitals in the UK need no less than 6,000 blood donations every day.
To meet this demand, an additional 190,000 new donors are needed each year.
At this time of the year, hospitals need donors even more because they are confronted with a & # 39; Christmas march & # 39 ;, because people cancel appointments.
Figures show that nearly half of blood donors are older than 45 and that 81% of 18-24 year-olds have never given blood.
A regular supply of all blood groups and types is required.
Before you give blood
If you want to donate blood, you can register online or call 0300 123 23 23.
When you log in to your account, you can find an appointment.
How you donate blood
When you feel comfortable in the chair, a nurse will put a cuff around your arm to maintain a small amount of pressure during donation (this does not measure blood pressure).
They then examine your arm to find a suitable vein and clean it with an antiseptic sponge.
A needle is inserted into your arm that collects your blood in a blood bag with your unique donor number.
You should not feel any discomfort or pain. If this is the case, tell an employee.
A scale weighs blood and stops when you have donated 470 ml (or just under a pint). This usually takes between 5 and 10 minutes.
The needle is removed and a sterile dressing is applied to your arm.
Your donation will be taken to one of our blood centers where it will be tested and processed before it is delivered to hospitals.
Source: NHS Give Blood
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