Blood Bank of Alaska seeks donations for 'critical need'

    Juneau, Alaska (AP) - An Alaska blood bank is seeking donations in the face of a critical shortage, according to its chief executive.

    Blood Bank of Alaska is calling on blood donors to help fulfill what it called a "critical need" in state hospitals.

    Various blood types are needed, according to Blood Bank of Alaska CEO Bob Scanlon, who said the organization strives to provide medical centers with O negative blood because it is the universal donor type that can help guarantee as many residents as possible receive care.

    "We are currently in critical need for several blood types such as O negative and O positive," Scanlon said.

    On average, 100 donors daily are needed to ensure Alaska hospitals have enough blood and blood products, Scanlon said in a statement.

    Donated blood helps patients including people fighting leukemia and other cancers, trauma victims, and mothers who suffer complications during child birth, Scanlon said.

    The blood bank supplies 21 Alaska hospitals and the military with donations from 15,000 Alaska residents annually, according to Scanlon.

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