PHOENIX — Vitalant is hoping to receive hundreds of blood donations this weekend amid a historically difficult time of year.
The non-profit group says the time between Christmas and New Year's Day is generally the time with the lowest number of blood donations. However, Arizona patients require more transfusions in January than any other month.
During November and December alone, 360 blood drives were canceled due to pandemic-related closures, resulting in a loss of about 8,000 blood donations.
To help make up for the lack of donations, a two-day blood drive is being hosted in Glendale and Tempe. Vitalant is hoping to get 600 participants at the weekend event.
You can sign up for a donation appointment online at Vitalant.org/SaveAZ or by calling 1-877-258-4835. Vitalant says appointments are recommended.
The event will take place Saturday from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Gila River Arena. The Sunday event will take place from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Tempe Center for the Arts.
Donors will receive a voucher for a Streets of New York 10-inch cheese pizza, a voucher for an Arizona Coyotes buy one/get one 2021-22 game ticket, and a shirt.
All blood types are wanted, but Vitalant says there is an urgent need for Type-O donations.
In addition, all donations will be tested for COVID-19 antibodies.
Those who have recovered from COVID-19 for at least 28 days are urged to give convalescent plasma to help provide antibodies for COVID-19 patients.