Blood Types

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As you probably know, we all have a blood type. But do you know what makes each type unique?

While several blood group systems are used to type your blood, ABO is the most important. Your ABO type is based on the presence or absence of two antigens (A and B) on the surface of red blood cells. There are four ABO types: A, B, AB and O.

Your blood type is also determined by Rh status: Rh+ or Rh-. That leaves us with eight possible blood types:

A+ A-
B+ B-
AB+ AB-
O+ O-

Each of these eight types is unique. Blood types determine who you can give blood to and receive blood from. Which type of donation is best for you is determined by your blood type, as well as patient need. Read more to find out what makes your blood type special:

Is one of the rarest blood types — only 6.6% of the US population has type O- Is a universal donor, meaning anyone can receive type O- blood products Is an ideal whole blood or double red blood cell donor. Your blood type is constantly needed, so please come in and donate as frequently as…

Is one of the most common and, consequently, most transfused blood types — 37.4% of the US population has type O+ Can give blood products to all Rh+ types (A+, B+, O+ and AB+) and receive all O types Is an ideal whole blood or double red blood cell donor Donation type is based on…

Is the rarest blood type — only 0.6% of the US population has type AB- Is a universal plasma and platelet donor, meaning anyone can receive AB- plasma or platelets For males, is an ideal apheresis plasma donor; for females, is an ideal whole blood donor Donation type is based on what is best for…

Is one of the rarest blood types — only 3.4% of the US population has type AB+ Is a universal recipient, meaning you can receive blood products of any blood type Is a universal plasma donor, meaning anyone with any blood type can receive your plasma For males, is an ideal apheresis plasma donor; for…

Is one of the rarest blood types — only 1.5% of the US population has type B- Can give blood products to all B and AB types and receive types O- and B- For males, is an ideal apheresis platelet donor; for females, is an ideal whole blood or double red blood cell donor Donation…

Is one of the rarest blood types — only 8.5% of the US population has type B+ Can give blood products to types B+ and AB+, and receive all B and O types For males, is an ideal apheresis platelet donor; for females, is an ideal whole blood or double red blood cell donor Donation…

Is one of the rarest blood types — only 6.3% of the US population has type A- Can give blood products to all A and AB types, and receive types A- and O- For males, is an ideal apheresis platelet donor; for females, is an ideal whole blood or double red blood cell donor Donation…

Is one of the most common and, consequently, most transfused blood types — 35.7% of the US population has type A+ Can give blood products to types A+ and AB+ and receive all A and O types For males, is an ideal apheresis platelet donor; for females, is an ideal whole blood or double red…

How Rare Is My Type?*

“The rarest blood type is the type that’s not available when YOU need it!”

Blood Type How Many Have It Frequency
O + 1 person in 3 37.4%
O – 1 person in 15 6.6%
A + 1 person in 3 35.7%
A – 1 person in 16 6.3%
B + 1 person in 12 8.5%
B – 1 person in 67 1.5%
AB + 1 person in 29 3.4%
AB – 1 person in 167 .6%

*These are general estimations for educational purposes only. Actual data may vary. Original source: AABB Technical Manual 18th Edition

Blood Type Compatibility