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Illustration of hands holding hearts with text saying "give blood, save lives."

Photo from University of California

Right now, running through your veins, is the power to save a life.

The nation is in the midst of a severe blood shortage. Hospitals and medical centers are in dire need of blood donations, especially Type ‘O,’ as shortages are hitting health providers across the country.

If you want to help, donating is simple: Book an appointment at your nearest American Red Cross donation center or contact one of the University of California Health hospitals to donate. Once you arrive for your appointment, the process takes about an hour, just 10 minutes of which is the actual donation. The rest of the time is spent filling out forms, providing a health history, and rehydrating with juice and a cookie.

Safety precautions remain in place

California may have officially re-opened, but protecting the community’s health remains paramount, and University of California Health will continue to follow the California Department of Public Health and Cal/OSHA guidelines. Masking and appropriate distancing will continue to be required of patients, visitors, contractors, faculty and co-workers at all UCH locations.

If you have recently received the COVID-19 vaccine from Pfizer, Moderna or Johnson & Johnson, there is no deferral unless you are currently experiencing side effects. Please do not schedule an appointment to donate blood if you have recently experienced any COVID-19 symptoms; have been diagnosed or suspected of having COVID-19 in the past 14 days; or have lived with someone who has been diagnosed with or suspected of having COVID-19 in the past 14 days.