(Orlando, Florida September 4, 2017) As all eyes are on Hurricane Irma, OneBlood, the local not-for-profit blood center serving Florida and the majority of the Southeast, says it must begin storm preparations now and is urging all eligible blood donors to donate before Irma potentially impacts its service area.
OneBlood says the current path of Hurricane Irma is too close for comfort and that now is the time to alert the public that an increase in donations is needed. The most critical time for blood donations is prior to any storm in order to sustain the blood supply during and immediately after the event.
Hurricanes can disrupt the blood supply for several days. This scenario unfolded in Texas after Hurricane Harvey devastated the area last week. Blood centers in the Lone Star state were unable to collect and OneBlood stepped in and sent several shipments of blood to help patients until the blood centers in Texas were able to resume operations.
This week, OneBlood has been called upon to assist the blood center in Puerto Rico and has already sent 100 units of blood to the island as they prepare for Irma’s arrival.
In order to ensure a ready blood supply OneBlood is urging all eligible blood donors to donate now. While all blood types are needed, there is an increased need for O Negative and O Positive blood as well as platelet and plasma donations.
OneBlood encourages all eligible donors to make blood donation part of their storm preparations and visit a donor center or Big Red Bus as soon as possible. For a list of OneBlood locations visit www.oneblood.org.
Generally healthy people age 16 or older who weigh at least 110 pounds can donate blood. To learn more about the importance of blood donation and how donors can target the power of their blood type visit oneblood.org.