Versiti Blood Center of Indiana has issued an emergency need for blood donations, urging Hoosiers to schedule a blood donation appointment in the coming days. Versiti has experienced a significant decline in scheduled appointments as the summer months approach, with roughly 2,500 open appointments over the next seven days.
“25 percent of our blood collections come from our high school and college partners, meaning that when it’s summer vacation, those community blood drives are not happening,” said Dr. Alcinda Flowers, associate medical director at Versiti. “And while we anticipate this dip every year, we are also seeing fewer first-time donors walking through our doors, which is adding to an already dangerous situation.”
Versiti believes that over 20% of its donors are first-time donors; yet, more than 50% of those donors only donate once. With an aging donor population and growing need, first-time blood donors are in high demand.
“Our loyal donors continue to hear our pleas and roll up their sleeves, for which we are extremely grateful,” added Dr. Flowers. “However, if every eligible donor could pledge to donate at least twice by the end of the year and encourage a friend or family member to give blood donation a try as well, the impact on the local blood supply would be significant.”
Versiti seeks for a three-day supply of available blood for local hospitals, but the group currently only has a one-day supply on hand. This not only puts people’s lives at danger, but it also inhibits the ability to respond to a blood shortage if the unexpected occurs.
All blood types are required, with O-positive and O-negative being the most in demand. The most frequent blood type is O-positive, while O-negative blood is the universal type that can be safely accepted by all patients in emergencies when the blood type is unknown.
To schedule an appointment to donate blood, call 1-317-916-5150 or visit versiti.org. Walk-in donors are also welcome.
Donor center locations:
- INDIANAPOLIS: 3450 N. Meridian St.
- FISHERS: 11005 Allisonville Road
- CARMEL: 726 Adams St., Suite 150
- GREENWOOD: 8739 U.S. 31 South
- TERRE HAUTE: 2021 S. Third St.
- LAFAYETTE: 2200 Elmwood Ave., Suite D-16
It takes roughly one hour to donate blood. Anyone in good health over the age of 17 who meets the qualifying conditions is invited to donate. Donors under the age of 16 must have parental permission to donate blood. Donors must bring a photo ID with their birth date.