The Western Cape Blood Service (WCBS) is appealing to all donors to donate blood as blood stocks are critically low. “We always aim to have a blood stock level of 5-days. Currently, there is a critical shortage in the O-negative blood group, with only a 2-day supply left. The A-positive blood stock is also declining as we only have a 3-day supply left”, says Marike Gevers, Public Relations Manager at WCBS.

The need for blood and blood products increases annually, and to meet the province’s demand, WCBS need to ensure that collection targets are met. Each day the blood service needs to collect 700 units of blood. “Ideally, we want 1-2% of the Western Cape’s population to become active blood donors. An active blood donor is classified as someone who donates blood once a year, even though you can donate 6 times a year. At the moment, only 0.92% of the population are active blood donors, yet 75% of the population will still require blood or blood products in their lifetime,” says Gevers.

If you are between the ages of 16 and 75, weigh 50kg or more, are in good general health, and lead a safe sexual lifestyle, you should be able to donate. Blood donation only takes 30 minutes of your time and you can donate blood every 56 days. It is never too late to donate blood. Gevers also encourage donors that haven’t donated blood in a while to find their closest blood donation clinic and to continue their lifesaving journey.

For more information, call WCBS on 021 507 6300 or email Blood stock updates and interesting facts about donation can be found on Facebook (@TheWCBS), Twitter (@The_WCBS) and Instagram (@thewcbs) accounts. Download the WCBS app, which is available on all iOS and Android devices. It will show you the nearest clinic, the current blood stock levels in real time, and your blood type if you’re a blood donor of course.

You’re just my type. Do something remarkable, donate blood.