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Red Cross issues call for blood after shortages due to weather

Platelets, type O negative blood and type AB plasma are three of the most in-demand blood...
Platelets, type O negative blood and type AB plasma are three of the most in-demand blood products by hospitals. (Source: Chris Drury, KFVS)((Source: Chris Drury, KFVS))
Updated: Mar. 11, 2019 at 7:20 PM CDT
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MURPHSYBORO, IL (KFVS) - The American Red Cross is issuing a call for platelet and type O negative and AB blood donors to make an appointment to give after severe winter weather in some parts of the country caused about 250 Red Cross blood drives to cancel in March.

That resulted in more than 8,500 uncollected blood and platelet donations. Platelets, type O negative blood and type AB plasma are three of the most in-demand blood products by hospitals.

Dr. Jeff Ripperda of Shawnee Heath Care in Murphysboro, Illinois says that he has seen shortages of blood where patients have had to have wait as long as two days before they were able to get the correct type that they needed.

He says that hospitals try to keep a major blood supply on hand for things like major surgeries where patients could face major blood loss, orthopedic surgeries such as knee replacement or hip replacement, and in cases of child birth.

Ripperda spoke about why Type O negative blood is in such a demand.

“If someone has type O negative blood that person can donate their blood to anybody, absolutely anybody, it doesn’t matter what the other person’s blood type is. Type O blood is in demand because it can be used for a wider array of individuals,” said Ripperda.

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