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Blood Types

All blood types are needed! Blood types are inherited and occur in the general population in different percentages. A healthy regional blood supply depends upon the donation of all types of blood on a regular basis. O Positive is the most common blood type.

While Atlanta Blood Services (ABS) always welcomes donations from donors with common blood types, it is also important for individuals with less common blood types to donate blood regularly, because it is difficult to find enough donors from small segments of the population. If you do not know your blood type, we can tell you after you donate with us. Below is a chart listing the various blood types and their frequency in the U.S. population.

Blood Group Positive Negative
0 38% 7%
A 34% 6%
B 9% 2%
AB 3% 1%

In an emergency, anyone can receive type O Red Blood Cells (RBC's), and type AB individuals can receive RBC's of any ABO type. Therefore, people with type O blood are known as "universal blood donors," and those with type AB blood are known as "universal recipients." AB donors are known as "universal plasma donors." ABS tags AB products for our local children’s hospitals, these products are used for children who have suffered a trauma. To learn more about ABS’ Platelet Pals Program if you are type AB please view our information sheet.

  • Be between the ages of 17 and 69. Whole Blood donors who are in good health and meet all donor requirements are welcome to donate over the age of 69. Platelet donors over the age of 69 will need physician consent to be considered for Platelet donations.
  • Approximately every 4 minutes one person in the United States is diagnosed with a blood cancer
  • If you live to the age of 72, there is a 95% chance you will need blood or blood components
  • Every 2 seconds someone in the U.S. needs blood
  • The blood used in an emergency is already on the shelves before the event occurs
  • More than 1 million people are diagnosed with cancer each year--many cancer patients do not have the ability to make their own platelets while undergoing treatment and may use all of the various blood components, sometimes daily, during their treatment

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