This PACU Nurse Has What Hospitals Need Most…Type O Blood.

Colleen Hathaway/Cascades Region

When Molly Lindsey was a student in nursing school, her friend talked her into donating blood one day at a drive held at the PCC Rock Creek Campus. Her friend’s husband had needed a blood transfusion in the past so she donated every chance she got.  Since becoming a Post-Anesthesia Care Unit (PACU) nurse, her “dream job” and working in a hospital, Molly’s been donating blood a lot more, about every few months.  She says it’s kind of an extension of her job.  She became a nurse to help people and this is an easy way to do that.  

As a PACU nurse who provides post-operative care, Molly has had to help patients in the operating room and after surgery who need multiple blood transfusions. She cites women undergoing emergency C-sections and people with internal bleeding as some typical examples of people needing blood transfusions.   

Molly has type O negative blood which can be used in transfusions for any blood type. It is routinely in short supply and in high demand by hospitals – both because it is the most common blood type and because type O negative blood is the universal blood type needed for emergency transfusions and for immune deficient infants. 

“Donating blood can be a relatively quick and easy process, especially by using RapidPass, an app that helps save time before your donation.  I’m in and out in about 20 minutes,” says Molly Lindsay. 

In her experience, staff are very kind, gentle, and talk you through every step while you lay back and play on your phone.  For example, they’ll tell you exactly how long it’ll take to prep your arm.  At the end, you’re rewarded with cookies and juice!  This actually helps with post-donation recovery. For those thinking about donating, but have questions, Molly suggests going to a blood drive and chatting with the staff who are always happy to answer questions.  

Molly feels like part of a little family at work–a good group of people that genuinely like each other and encourage each other.  She has persuaded her colleagues to donate blood as well.  One Friday every quarter she and a coworker donate blood. 

“It just makes me feel like I can do something important, especially since I’m O negative.  When you can show people how much it helps, and who it helps, that makes you more likely to do it,” she said.

The American Red Cross encourages eligible donors of all races and ethnicities to give blood or platelets to increase the diversity of the blood supply.  There is a constant need for all blood types, but the demand is often higher for types O and B blood. Some ethnic groups are more likely to have these blood types and play a key role in ensuring availability for patients.  Facts About Blood and Blood Types, The American Red Cross, 2024. On this World Blood Donor day (June 14), no matter what your blood type, please consider making an appointment to give at