'Bat signal' activated calling donors to act

BLOOD donors will receive a digital “bat signal” today as blood stocks fall and demand spikes.

The region needs more blood donations following a sudden spike in demand and sick donors have had to cancel appointments after a debilitating flu season.

This will be the first time in almost two years that the blood signal has been activated with concerns about the stocks of O-negative and O-positive.

“The blood service aims to store six days’ supply of each blood type to ensure a surplus in the event of a national emergency,” blood service spokesman Shaun Inguanzo said.

“O-negative is the universal blood type that can be given to anyone in an emergency, and O-positive is the most common blood type in the country: more than 40 per cent of Australians would need O-positive blood in the event of a transfusion. 

The problem is that up to 1000 donors a week are cancelling their donations due to cold and flu symptoms, and, to make matters worse we’ve had a recent spike in demand for blood.”

Mr Inguanzo said the organisation would now activate its blood signal on social media – one of the quickest and most effective ways of reaching new donors. 

“The blood signal means that we need donors now,” he said.

“We liken the blood signal to the bat signal: that is, we hope Australian donors will see it as a call-to-action to rise to the occasion. 

Even if you can’t donate, you can share the blood signal to encourage friends to give in your place thanks to the power of social media. Every donation you make or help encourage can help save three lives, including those of cancer patients, unborn babies, mothers giving birth, road trauma victims, burns victims, and people who need kidney dialysis.”

To be a hero and save lives today, call 13 14 95 or visit donateblood.com.au

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