Puget Sound Blood Center has made a special appeal for donors to give blood over the holiday season.
According to the PSBC, the number of people visiting blood centers and mobile drives from now until the first of the year typically declines by about 30 percent. David Leitch, director of donor and volunteer resources at PSBC, is asking donors to give an hour of their time from now until Jan. 4 to make up for that shortage.
Leitch said 900 donations are needed each weekday to provide sufficient supplies to hospitals in the region. There is a specific need for O-negative blood donors, whose blood can be given to patients with any other blood type.
"We’re asking people to look at their calendar to schedule just one hour (through Jan. 4) to donate blood," Leitch said. "That will carry us through the holidays, and we can avoid an emergency call for donors down the road if blood supplies became depleted, especially if we’re hit with snowy weather."
Eastside residents can donate blood at the Bellevue Center at 1021 112th Ave. NE. There are 11 donor centers in all in Western Washington (click here to find other centers in your area); community blood drives also are under way and can be found on the PSBC website. Appointments are encouraged and can be scheduled by calling 1-800-398-7888, but walk-ins are welcome.