Wednesday, June 20 , 2018, 10:10 pm | Fair 63º


United Blood Services in Need of Donations Before Labor Day Weekend

In particular, there is a shortage of types O-negative, A-negative and AB

The summer need for blood hasn’t stopped, and with the busy Labor Day weekend fast approaching, United Blood Services needs you to find the hero in you and donate blood.

Blood demand can be high on holidays such as these, and donations are needed before the weekend to ensure a steady supply. United Blood Services is asking donors to give this week and the week after the holiday to ensure there is an ample supply of blood on hand for the holiday weekend and subsequent weeks.

While donations of all blood types are encouraged, donors with Type O-negative, Type A-negative and Type AB (positive or negative) are especially needed, as there is currently a shortage of these blood types.

O-negative red cells can be transfused to anyone and are often used to help patients when there is no time to determine the patient’s own blood type. Likewise, type AB plasma can be given to all patients, and is the only plasma used for trauma patients and neonatal babies. There is always a special need for AB plasma, and this summer there is a serious shortage, both locally and nationally.

As a token of appreciation, all blood donors receive points for great rewards such as ice cream, movie tickets and more. If donors make an appointment ahead, they’ll receive an additional 100 points, which along with their donation award is enough points for a pint of ice cream. Click here for details.

Donations may be made at the UBS Center in Santa Barbara at 902 Laguna St. at the corner of Cañon Perdido, or at any of a number of community blood drives happening throughout the county. Donors are asked to make an appointment by contacting United Blood Services at 805.965.7037 or toll-free at 800.715.3699. Or click here, then click on “Donate Blood” and type in your ZIP code to find a list of drives nearby.

Appointments are appreciated, but not necessary. Walk-ins are also welcome, and will be honored as our appointment schedule allows. The blood center will be closed Monday in recognition of Labor Day.

You may donate blood if you are over age 16, weigh at least 110 pounds and are in good health. Additional height/weight requirements apply to donors age 22 or younger.

The Santa Barbara Center hours are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday and Tuesday, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday (pizza served from 5 to 7 p.m. on Wednesdays), and 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Fridays. The center will be closed on Labor Day.

— Janna Nichols is the marketing and communications manager for United Blood Services.

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