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Riverhead Community Blood Drive aims to ease current blood emergency

New York Blood Center has announced a blood emergency. Many blood types are in extremely short supply.

Riverhead Community Blood Drive is set for Tuesday, December 6 at Riverhead Fire Department headquarters, at 540 Roanoke Avenue from 1 to 7 p.m.

“As we enter the holiday season, our community experiences an annual lull in donations due to school breaks, family trips, the cold and flu season, and bad weather,” according to the blood center’s executive director for donor recruitment Andrea Cefarelli.

The organization is already having difficulty maintaining adequate O-negative and Rh-negative blood supplies, according to the release.

“Even with our best efforts, our success in recruiting blood donors and scheduling blood drives decreases,” she said. “Meanwhile, hospital demand remains high.”

To make an appointment to donate blood Dec. 6, contact Lauren Reichel at (631) 369-9136 or email her at CommBloodDrives@optonline.net

Walk-ins are always welcome, Reichel said.

Eligibility criteria are:

  • Must be between 16-76 years of age
  • Must have valid Id
  • Minimum weight 110 lbs.
  • No tattoos in past 12 months

Note: 16-year-olds require parent’s permission

For eligibility questions please call 1-800-688-0900.

The entire donation process takes less than an hour, and a single donation can be used to save multiple lives, according to the blood center.

Donors with O-negative blood type, or “universal donors,” are especially encouraged to give, as their blood can be used in emergencies.

Nearly 2,000 donations are needed each day in New York and New Jersey alone, the blood center said. About one in seven hospital admissions requires a blood transfusion, and, with a limited shelf life, supplies must be continually replenished.

N.Y. Blood Center is also urgently seeking people and organizations to host blood drives. The center estimates an additional 240 blood drives are needed in December and January to meet hospital demand for life-saving blood.

For information on how to organize a blood drive 
Please call Toll Free: 1-800-933-2566 
or visit: http://www.nybc.org

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