blood donors urgently needed

With the critical appeal for blood continuing in Arizona, Vitalant is hosting the Saving Arizona Blood Drive from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, July 3. 

The organization is hoping donors will come from around the Valley to Tempe Center for the Arts. As thank-you gifts, one of the 10 finalists for a 2021 VW Tiguan S will be drawn from the blood drive. Free tickets to a future Coyotes game with the purchase of an additional ticket for select 2021-22 games, a voucher for a free Whataburger, and Vitalant T-shirts will also be given out. 

Appointments are strongly recommended for social distancing: Visit vitalant.org/saveaz or call 1-877-25-VITAL (1-877-258-4825).

Blood drive cancellations forced by COVID-19 challenges continue to affect donation rates. The Independence Day holiday timeframe is the lowest week of the summer for donations. Vitalant has just a one-day supply of Type O blood on the shelves to meet the needs of 62 Arizona hospitals. Blood donors are urgently needed. 

“While donor vacations reduce the number of people giving blood, heavy traffic on the roads and highways increases the potential for accidents and the need for blood,” said Sid Lewis, senior director of donor recruitment Vitalant’s Southwest division.

While donors of all blood types are needed, Type O blood is in greatest demand because it can be substituted for other blood types in emergencies or when shortages arise. While O-negative is the universal blood type that can be given to 100% of patients, O-positive can be substituted for all positive blood types, which makes up more than 80% of the population.

Unvaccinated donors must bring and wear a mask or face covering.

Appointments are strongly recommended to ensure social distancing. Capacity in the building will be limited and monitored. Donors should arrive no earlier than 5 minutes before a donation appointment. Only people donating blood will be allowed access to the building. No guests or children.