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Type O blood donors sought as Lee faces ‘severe’ shortage

By Staff | Jan 8, 2020

Lee Health is experiencing a severe shortage of both Type O-Negative and Type O-Positive blood, with supplies running 25 percent below minimum, and health care system is asking the public to donate.

Because blood Type O can be used for anyone, Type O is routinely in short supply and in high demand by hospitals, like the five served by the Lee Heath Blood Centers, officials said, adding that Lee Health relies on donors who come into the Blood Centers or participate in mobile blood drives.

“All blood donated stays at Lee Health and helps patients in our community,” Lee Health said in a release issued Wednesday afternoon. “We are asking for the community’s support to help make sure we have enough blood.”

The system needs about 800 units of blood per day to serve its primary and specialty hospitals.

Most individuals can donate donate.

Donor requirements, according to the Lee Health web site include:

– To donate blood you must:

* Weigh at least 115 lbs.

* Be at least 17 years old, or 16 with parental consent

* Provide photo ID, if new donor

– Reasons you may be deferred from donating

There are several reasons a potential donor is deferred from donating, including:

* Currently ill – colds, flu, sore throat – and/or being treated for an illness.

* Recent dental surgery ( no infection and off antibiotics)

* Other blood or plasma donation within the last 8 weeks

* History of hepatitis

* Positive HIV test

– There are many medications that you can take and still be allowed to donate, including:

* Blood pressure medications – provided that your B/P is within normal limits

* Cholesterol medications

* Aspirin, Tylenol or similar medication

If you are on a prescription medication and it is not mentioned above, check with the Lee Memorial Blood Center staff for further clarification.

Lee Health has blood centers located at each of its hospitals, and in the Bonita Community Health Center.

Locations include:

* Lee Memorial Hospital

2776 Cleveland Ave.

Fort Myers, FL 33901

Phone: 239-343-2333


Mon., Tues., Wed., & Fri.

8:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

Thurs. 8:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m.

* Summerlin Crossings

15880 Summerlin Road,

Suite 113

Fort Myers, FL 33908

Phone: 239-437-5061


Mon., Tues., Thurs., & Fri.

8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

Wed. 8 a.m. – 7 p.m.

* Cape Coral Hospital

636 Del Prado Blvd.

Cape Coral, FL 33990

Phone: 239-424-2400


Mon., Wed., Thurs., & Fri.

8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

Tues. 8 a.m. – 7 p.m.

* Bonita Community Health Center

3501 Health Center Boulevard,

Suite 2011

Bonita Springs, FL 34135

Phone: 239-495-4372


Monday – Friday

8a.m. – 4p.m.

Lee Health is also hosting a blood drive in Cape Coral next Saturday in conjunction with the Cape Coral chapter of Zonta International.

The drive will be held at the Publix in Cape Coral Landings, 127 Cape Coral Pkwy. W.

For more information visit www.leehealth.org/bloodcenter .