Public urged to donate blood ahead of anticipated holiday shortfall

Public urged to donate blood ahead of anticipated holiday shortfall
Blood filling up a bag during a blood drive. SOURCE: WFXG (Source: Lex Juarez)

BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - Vitalant is asking members of the public to schedule appointments at its Baton Rouge donation center or mobile blood drive ahead of an expected shortfall of nearly 8,500 blood donations nationwide the week of July 1.


  • Visit
  • Call 877-25-VITAL to schedule an appointment
  • Walk-ins are also welcome at all locations

According to Vitalant fewer donors are available around the July Fourth holiday, at a time when the country sees and increase in accidents and trauma cases.

For those cases it is especially important to receive donations of O-negative type bloods, the universal blood type. Vitalant says its current O-negative blood supply sits at an approximate two-day supply, which is half of the ideal quantity needed to support patient needs.

However, donors of all types are needed.


  • Must be at least 16-years-old
  • Weigh at least 110 lbs.
  • Be in general good health

Additional height/weight requirements apply to donors 22 and younger, and donors who are 16 and 17 must have signed permission from a parent or guardian.

Vitalant also said platelet donations, which have a shelf-life of only five days, are also in high demand. Both existing and first-time donors of all blood types are urged to donate as soon as possible.

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