Solid support for blood donations locally

Officials said a majority of Red Deer’s 492 open appointments in June were filled

By Emily Rogers

Red Deer Express

Since Canadian Blood Services’ call to action in June, there has been an outpouring of support from Canadians.

Canadians were encouraged to donate 60,000 units of blood by July 1st, and residents rose to the challenge as 73,500 units were collected by the end of June.

The generosity showed by Canadians is greatly appreciated, as now there will not be an impact on the care of individuals who require blood transfusions everyday, which was a growing concern, officials added.

Territory Manager Shaun Richer said a majority of Red Deer’s 492 open appointments in June were filled as well.

“Donating is still important, and there is still a need,” Richer said, adding that currently the Red Deer blood donation clinic has 1,939 open appointments to fill by September.

“People should know they are literally saving a life, and it doesn’t take a lot of time to donate.”

Overall, officials say that 155,000 donations are required before Labour Day in September.

Canadian Blood Services is preparing for the summer months as historically donations slow down, because of travel, holidays, family activities and changes in routine.

The national blood inventory is improving but every minute of every day, a patient in Canada needs blood.

“As we head into July and August all blood types are needed but a particular need remains for O negative blood, because it is the only type compatible with all other blood types,” said Mark Donnison, vice president of donor relations.

“While our supply of O negative blood has increased to a 3.9 day supply, we need to have between a five- and eight-day supply of blood to meet anticipated hospital demands.”

Donation appointments can be made through the Canadian Blood Services web site, or through the App.