'Every blood donation can save up to three lives'

EUGENE, Ore. - Josiah Sheehan donates blood about 10 times per year at Lane Blood Center in South Eugene if he doesn't catch a more convenient bloodmobile stop.

"I have family that gets blood transfusions, and it's important for me to do this," Sheehan said. "I just like feeling like I'm helping out the community."

The Lane County Blood Center says they're critically low on blood types approaching the holiday weekend.

And on average every 33 minutes, someone in Lane County needs a blood transfusion.

"Lane Blood Center has been in our community for over 50 years," Kristi McElhinney of Lane Blood Center said. "We're the sole supplier of blood for lane county and we rely heavily on our loyal blood donors."

The donation process takes less than an hour. Snacks are provided, and the one pint of blood drawn can benefit multiple people.

"Every blood donation can save up to three lives. We're able to separate that one donation into three components that the hospitals can use in those emergency situations," McElhinney said.

There is a one in seven chance that every person entering the hospital will need a blood transfusion, according to Lane Blood Center.

"We need to see about 80 donors every day in order to keep the blood supply where it needs to be for Lane County," McElhinney said.

Right now, O- and B- are in shortest supply. The center says they have less than 50 percent of what they hope to have on the shelf.

Representatives said that even if you don't know what blood type you are, they need all types all the time.