Oh Canada, we need O's and A's now

Blood donors urged to refill national blood supply before Canada Day

OTTAWA, June 25, 2014 /CNW/ - As Canadians prepare to celebrate Canada Day, many patients are fighting for survival. Current and first-time blood donors from coast to coast are being urged to make a blood donation before or immediately following the Canada Day holiday. All blood donors are needed, in particular those with type O and A blood.

"With the holiday falling mid-week this year, we're seeing fewer appointments booked and a higher number of cancellations around Canada Day," says Mark Donnison, Vice-President of Donor Relations. "This is particularly challenging because many regular donors are planning to take an extra-long weekend."

According to the Canada Safety Council website, more fatalities occur on Canadian roads during the summer months than any other time of year, and 85 per cent of these collisions are considered preventable. It can take up to 50 donors to help save the life of someone in a car crash.

While it is not possible to prevent all traffic crashes from happening, it is possible to ensure blood is there for all Canadian patients when they need it. Canadian Blood Services forecasts that they will need almost 30,000 appointments each week during the summer to meet demand. Right now, there are more than 7,500 appointments available across the country between now and July 5.

Canadian Blood Services is urging eligible community members to do something patriotic in honour of Canada Day, help save a fellow Canadian by giving blood. To book an appointment visit blood.ca or call      1 888 2 DONATE (1 888 236 6283) now.

If you already have an appointment to give blood this summer, thank you. A Canadian patient and their family are now counting on you, so please honour your appointment. Their life depends on you.

Statistics:

  • Canadian Blood Services needs to fill 30,000 appointments every week to meet the demand of blood and blood products.
  • In recent months, about 20 per cent of donors have missed their appointments.
  • Platelets, part of blood that helps with clotting, are of particular concern around long weekends because they have a shelf-life of just five days before they expire.

About Canadian Blood Services
Canadian Blood Services is a national, not-for-profit charitable organization that manages the supply of blood products in all provinces and territories outside of Quebec. The organization oversees the OneMatch Stem Cell and Marrow Network, is establishing the national public cord blood bank (excluding Quebec) and supports leading practice development, professional education and public awareness for organ and tissue donation and transplantation. Canadian Blood Services also purchases pharmaceutical plasma products, contributes to transfusion medicine research and provides diagnostic services in some provinces. It operates 41 permanent collection sites and more than 21,000 mobile 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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Canadian Blood Services

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