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Blood donations needed

The Mayo Clinic Blood Bank has made an urgent plea to its 34,000 Rochester-based employees for blood donations, and Mayo is now also reaching out to the broader community.

When contacted by the Post-Bulletin, the clinic indicated the Blood Bank needs donations of O-negative blood, in particular.

In 2013, Mayo extended the interval between times when individual donors can make donations — by four weeks — out of concern that frequent donors experienced a drop in their iron levels.

The clinic did not point to that change as a reason for the current shortage, but focused instead on encouraging employees and community members to donate.

The supply of O negative blood is now "well below critical thresholds and the need is ever-present," says a statement from Mayo attributed to Dr. Justin D. Kreuter, medical director of the Mayo Blood Donor Program.


People with O-negative blood type were once considered "universal donors." Mayo now says online that even O-negative can contain antibodies some people will react to.

However, in an emergency, " O negative red blood cells may be given to anyone — especially if the situation is life-threatening or the matching blood type is in short supply. "

To donate, according to Mayo,there are three sites available:

• Hilton Building, 201 Second St. S.W. (507-284-4475)

• Mayo Clinic Hospital-Saint Marys Campus, 1216 Second St. S.W., (507-255-4359)

• IBM (for businesses on IBM property,507-253-7545)

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