Bags of typo O positive and negative blood. Courtesy San Diego Blood Bank

Sharp HealthCare is encouraging volunteers to donate 1,700 units of blood Saturday to help the San Diego Blood Bank restock its critically low inventory of types O positive and negative.

Last year, the annual Sharp blood drive brought in 1,300 units, and the goal this year amid the continuing shortage is for a nearly one-third increase.

The drive will take place from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 25, in the auditorium of Sharp HealthCare’s corporate headquarters at 8695 Spectrum Center Blvd.

An appointment to donate can be scheduled online or by calling 1-800-4-MY-SDBB. Donors are advised to drink plenty of fluids, maintain their usual eating habits and avoid fatty foods.

Sharp said it uses approximately 30,000 units of blood products each year to care for patients at its hospitals across San Diego County.

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Chris Jennewein

Chris Jennewein is Editor & Publisher of Times of San Diego.