The county chapter of the American Red Cross has put out an emergency call for type O blood, saying that blood supplies for Orange and Los Angeles county hospitals are only at 40% of "desired levels."
The county chapter supplies 95% of the blood used by local hospitals, according to Sylvia Fanton, Red Cross public relations specialist. If the supply does not increase immediately, non-emergency surgeries such as hysterectomies may have to be postponed, Fanton said.
"If we can increase the number (of type O donors) to 300 each day in 10 days, we should be able to return to our normal levels," she said.
Current levels, however, are sufficient for proceeding with "emergency needs and certain planned surgical operations," she added.
Persons who are 17 years or older, weigh at least 110 pounds and are in good health are allowed to donate blood every 56 days, Fanton said.
More information can be obtained by calling (714) 835-5381, Ext. 450.
The Santa Ana Red Cross office, located at 600 North Park Center, will extend its hours on Sunday at 8 a.m. to 12:45 p.m.