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American Red Cross Issues Local Blood Supply Alert
Date:9/12/2008

Local Blood Supply Extremely Low, Health of Local Patients May Be at Risk

PHILADELPHIA, Sept. 12 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The American Red Cross Penn-Jersey Region is issuing a blood supply alert for New Jersey and southeastern Pennsylvania.

All blood types are needed; however there is a critical need for Type O blood. Brigid O'Neill-LaGier, Chief Executive Officer of the Penn-Jersey Region, is appealing to people in the community to donate blood. "The blood supply is a community resource; a resource that solely relies on volunteer donors in communities across the country. Locally, we are at risk of not being able to provide enough blood of certain types needed to support patient care."

People are urged to call 1-800-GIVE LIFE (1-800-448-3543) or to visit http://www.pleasegiveblood.org to schedule a blood donation appointment as soon as possible. There are community blood drives and donor centers located throughout New Jersey and southeastern Pennsylvania seven days a week.

Why is the American Red Cross issuing a blood supply alert locally?

The American Red Cross supplies nearly half of the nation's blood supply to hospitals through 35 blood service regions across the country. Although the Red Cross system is able to ship blood when and where it is needed, volunteer blood donors of all blood types are needed everyday to replenish and sustain the blood supply both nationally and locally. "When one region or area of the country experiences low blood supplies, it puts a strain on the entire blood collection system, which could ultimately affect patient care locally," says O'Neill-LaGier.

Population density, along with patient care within these regions, is vastly diverse, making blood collection an issue of supply and demand based on blood type. Currently in New Jersey and southeastern Pennsylvania, the need is greatest for O Negative and O Positive blood. O'Nei
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SOURCE American Red Cross
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