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Tuesday, June 6, 2023
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Urgent call for blood and plasma donations



An urgent appeal for blood and plasma donations has been issued in an effort to increase critical supplies before the upcoming Easter period.

The Australian Red Cross Lifeblood says it needs 3,600 people to donate blood across the country this week alone.

There is a particular need for donors with A positive, B positive, O positive and O negative blood.

Lifeblood is also asking people to book a donation between Good Friday and Easter Monday to ensure a continuous supply of blood and plasma for patients who will need it over the long weekend next month.

Lifeblood CEO Cath Stone says demand from hospitals is at its highest level in nearly a decade.

“We now have more donors than at any time in the past 10 years, yet the demand for all blood groups, especially O negative, continues to increase as hospitals catch up with post-pandemic surgeries,” he said on Tuesday.

O negative has the universal blood type and is used to treat patients when their blood type is unknown and is often stored in ambulances and rescue helicopters for trauma patients who may require large quantities in a short time.

“Less than seven per cent of the Australian population is O negative, making it one of the rarest blood types; however, its versatility means that it accounts for 16 per cent of the blood ordered by hospitals,” said Ms. Stone.


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