Blood emergency declared in New York supply

As a result of last week's extreme humidity and high temperatures, blood donations fell by 25% leaving the community blood supply at risk and in a critical state far below what is required to adequately serve local patients. Therefore, New York Blood Center, which serves close to 200 NY & NJ hospitals, has issued an immediate and urgent appeal for donations and blood drives.

Anyone eligible to donate blood or host a blood drive is urged to call 1-800-933-BLOOD or go to http://www.nybloodcenter.org/ to schedule an immediate donation appointment or locate the most convenient donor location in New York City, Long Island, New Jersey or the Hudson Valley.

"Our supply of some blood types, including O Positive, O Negative, A Negative and B Negative, is so low we have been forced to ration distribution to area hospitals because we simply don't have enough to go around," explained Dr. Robert Jones, New York Blood Center President & CEO. "We foresee an even worsening blood shortage situation for the balance of this summer if people don't rally to this plea by rolling up their sleeve to give the gift of life on behalf of their neighbors and their community."

Additionally, more summer blood drives are needed. "Our community needs 2,000 volunteer donations each and every day to ensure patient transfusion care is met locally. If we don't see an increase in donations and drives, it's almost certain increased blood rationing will occur and local surgeries could be cancelled," added Dr. Jones.

New York Blood Center provides all blood drives with highly skilled, professional staff, sterile equipment, donor beds, refreshments and marketing expertise. Groups wanting to host a blood drive just need to provide space and commitment. Blood donors must be at least age 17 (or age 16 in New York if written parental permission is provided), weigh a minimum of 110 pounds and be in generally good health. Donors must also meet all other Food & Drug Administration and New York and New Jersey Departments of Health donor criteria.

New York Blood Center is the nation's largest non-profit, community-based blood center. With the support of five regional recruitment, collection and distribution operations in Manhattan, Brooklyn/Staten Island, Long Island, New Jersey and the Hudson Valley, New York Blood Center has been providing life-saving blood transfusion products and services to the greater NY/NJ community since 1964.

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