AMARILLO, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) — The Coffee Memorial Blood Center recently asked the community to donate blood, especially the universal blood type O-negative, as part of National Blood Donor Month.

The donor month campaign, according to officials with Coffee Memorial, was established to “inspire donors to continue to give during the harsh winter months.” Officials detailed that January often sees critical blood shortages because of the holiday and flu seasons.

CMBC reminded the community that all blood types are encouraged to donate but O-negative blood is greatly needed at this time. O-negative blood is the only universal type that can be transfused to any patient regardless of their blood type and most often benefits premature babies, and sickle cell patients.

Coffee Memorial shared the story about premature identical twins Wyatt and Grady Griffin, who were less than three pounds each at birth. The babies received three units of lifesaving O-negative blood at birth.

Photo courtesy of Coffee Memorial Blood Center.

Coffee Memorial added that successful donors will receive a mini health screening, which will include a blood pressure and cholesterol check, along with a free T-shirt and snacks.

Interested donors can call 877-340-8777 or schedule an appointment online.

Donors 16 years of age must provide a signed parental permission form and must weigh at least 125 pounds while individuals over the age of 18 must weigh at least 110 pounds.