Canadians asked to "bring a friend" to help replenish national blood supply

Recent appointment cancellations and no-shows leave donor chairs empty

OTTAWA, Sept. 18, 2014 /CNW/ - Canadian Blood Services is asking all eligible Canadians to donate blood this fall and to bring a friend to their next appointment. Higher than expected cancellations and no-shows over the past months have put extra pressure on the national blood supply.

This year, Canadian Blood Services has reported 133,000 appointment cancellations and 119,000 people missing their appointment entirely.

"When a donor does not attend a scheduled appointment many of them believe that someone else in the community will step forward and take their place," says Mark Donnison, Canadian Blood Services vice-president of donor relations. "However, we are actually being faced with a number of empty donor chairs as we attempt to fill up last-minute cancellations." 

Canadian Blood Services will need to fill an additional 78,000 appointments by the end of October to meet the anticipated demand.

"If this current trend continues we would be concerned that regular hospital demand would put a strain on our national inventory. To help fill empty donor chairs, we are encouraging Canadians to invite a friend and welcome new donors into the network," says Donnison.

Here's how you can make a difference and help save a life:

  • Book, keep and save your next appointment.
  • Invite a friend, family member or coworker. Almost all first time donors bring a friend, and it is a great way to support each other and make it a social event.

 

Canadian Blood Services now has free wireless internet at select clinics for those who want to Skype in some moral support or book their next appointment using the GiveBlood app.   

To book an appointment with someone in your community today, download the GiveBlood app, visit blood.ca or call 1 888 2 DONATE (1 888 236 6283) today.

About Canadian Blood Services
Canadian Blood Services is a national, not-for-profit charitable organization that manages the supply of blood and blood products in all provinces and territories outside of Quebec. Canadian Blood Services also oversees the OneMatch Stem Cell and Marrow Network, is establishing Canada's (excluding Quebec) national public cord blood bank and supports leading practices development, professional education and public awareness for organ and tissue donation and transplantation. In addition, Canadian Blood Services purchases manufactured plasma protein products, contributes to transfusion medicine research and provides diagnostic services in some provinces. It operates 41 permanent collection sites and more than 21,000 donor clinics annually. The provincial and territorial Ministries of Health provide operational funding to Canadian Blood Services. The federal government, through Health Canada, is responsible for regulating the blood system.

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SOURCE: Canadian Blood Services

For further information: media@blood.ca, 1 877 709 7773

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