The Australian Red Cross Lifeblood is currently experiencing a critical O type supply period, with stocks of both O Positive and O Negative reaching their lowest point in the last year.

Eligible donors being encouraged to visit their nearest centre and give blood over the next two weeks in particular.

O Positive is the most common blood type in Australia, while O Negative is considered the universal blood type and is used to treat patients whose blood type is not known, meaning it is used to supply ambulances and rescue helicopters.

Wollongong Red Cross Lifeblood’s Group Account Manager Megan Green is encouraging O-type donors around the Illawarra to donate.

“Demand for both O blood types is continuing to increase, despite more people donating than ever before,” Ms Green said.

“We need an extra 500 people with O Negative and O Positive blood to donate every day across the country in the next two weeks to help boost blood supplies for patients.”

Nadia Paige, an O Negative blood donor, spoke about why she donates as someone with the universal blood type.

“Having O type negative blood is really really important and I’m quite lucky to have it because I know I can donate to a whole range of different people,” Nadia said.

The Red Cross emphasised that while they need more donations in general, that it is critical that they get more O-type blood within the next two weeks to supplement this nation-wide shortage.