S’pore’s O Blood Stocks Dip To Critical Levels, HSA & Red Cross Call For Donors

HSA & Singapore Red Cross Call For Donors After O Blood Stocks Fall To Critical Levels

The Singapore Red Cross (SRC) and the Health Sciences Authority (HSA) are urgently calling for O blood donors to come forward and donate blood over the two weeks leading up to Chinese New Year (CNY).

This is due to O blood stocks dropping to critical levels as a result of high usage and low donor turnout.

Those who are eligible can book an appointment via the DonateBlood app today.

O blood stocks at critical levels

In a joint press release dated 25 Jan, the HSA and SRC urgently called for O blood donors to donate blood and restore stocks to healthy levels over the two weeks leading up to the CNY holidays.

The organisations shared that group O blood stocks have dipped below six days.

Currently, they are at critical levels due to high usage of the blood types and blood donor turnout being lower than normal since the start of 2024.

As the universal blood group, O blood is necessary during emergencies when patients’ blood groups are unknown.

SRC and HSA also stated that nearly half of all patients in Singapore have group O blood and can only receive it.

If the stocks continue to fall, medical authorities in Singapore have to postpone elective surgeries. This could compromise life-saving transfusions as well.

Blood collection may fall further during CNY

In addition, SRC and HSA pointed out that during festive seasons such as CNY, blood collection can fall by as much as 20%.

Source: Nguyễn Hiệp on Unsplash

“It is crucial that we prevent further depletion of the Group O blood stocks and restore them to healthy levels now to ensure we can meet the transfusion needs of patients,” the organisations said.

We urge all eligible, healthy individuals with blood groups O+ and O- who are between 16 and 60 years old and weigh at least 45 kg to step forward and contribute.

They have also encouraged donors to donate before their travels. Travelling to certain countries or regions with insect-borne infection risks can make them ineligible to donate blood for some time.

“Each donation is crucial to ensure that we can maintain a minimum nine-day stockpile to respond to any civil or medical emergencies in Singapore,” HSA and SRC said.

Check eligibility before booking your appointment

Donors must meet the following criteria, according to the SRC:

  • Be aged between 16 and 60 (youths aged 16 and 17 will need to bring a signed parental consent form)
  • Weigh at least 45kg
  • Be in good health
  • Have no symptoms of infection (e.g. sore throat, cough, runny nose, diarrhoea) for at least one week
  • Have no fever in the last four weeks
  • Have no intake of antibiotics for the last seven days, or wait one week from last dose
  • Have a haemoglobin level of at least 12.5g/dL for females, and at least 13.0g/dL for males

Those who have travelled in the last four months also may not be able to donate.

Check your eligibility here, before booking an appointment via the DonateBlood app. You can also choose to complete the Donor Health Questionnaire form before your donation to reduce waiting time.

A list of the bloodbank locations and their weekly opening hours, as well as during the CNY period, can be seen here.

For more information, visit SRC’s official website for blood donation or call the organisation at 6220 0183.

Also read: Blood Donors With A+, B+ & O+ Types Needed Urgently, Stockpile Now Being Used

Blood Donors With A+, B+ & O+ Types Needed Urgently, Stockpile Now Being Used

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Featured image adapted from Singapore Red Cross.

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