Christmas could see blood stocks dwindle dangerously low with fewer people donating after the recent snap of cold weather.
It is feared there won’t be enough for the health service to make it through the festive period as people around the UK have been put off by plummeting temperatures.
NHS bosses are urging people to give blood to save lives, and have revealed that they are particularly short on B negative and O negative blood.
Warnings come at a time when the health service is already facing added pressure from the Aussie flu, and people have been told that shovelling snow could trigger a heart attack.
It is thought that stocks are lower than usual after the cool spell that hit the UK earlier this month prevented people from reaching donor centres.
NHS Blood and Transplant, which runs the Liverpool Donor Centre, said there were cancelled appointments due to snow.
Jon Latham, NHS Blood and Transplant said: “The recent poor weather has resulted in us having less O negative and B negative blood than is required for patients going into Christmas.”
Anyone with these blood types are being encouraged to walk in to a donor centre, while people with other blood types can make an appointment.
Since red blood cells don’t last more than a matter of weeks, the NHS needs a constant supply of blood given.
That equates with 6,000 donations every day to meet demand, and there are 200,000 new donors needed every year to replace those who no longer can.
There are four main blood types – O, A, B and AB – and 0 is the most common and needed.
According to NHS Blood and Transplant you can give blood if you are fit and healthy, aged between 17 and 66 and weigh between 50kg and 160kg.
Additionally, if you are aged between 66 and 70 you can give blood if you have donated before, and you can also give blood if you are over 70 and have in the last two years.
Men can donate every 12 weeks, while women can give blood every 16 weeks.
The health service said they particularly needed more given from black, Asian and minority ethnic communities so they have enough of certain blood types.
Visit the NHS Blood and Transplant website to find out your nearest place to donate.