A year of challenge and reward for Canadian Blood Services

    Annual report celebrates transformation of Canada's blood system

    OTTAWA, Sept. 5 /CNW Telbec/ - The 2007/2008 fiscal year held both
challenges and rewards for Canadian Blood Services, according to the
organization's ninth Annual Report to Canadians, titled 'Transforming the
Blood System.'
    "Change is never easy, but for Canadian Blood Services, it has been
rewarding," states the report, tabled Sept. 4 at the Annual Meeting of Members
in Quebec City. "This year we faced a number of challenges while also
delivering on a number of strategic directives."
    In 2007/2008, 70 donors tested positive for West Nile Virus - more than
in all previous testing years combined. Management systems developed over the
past few years protected the blood supply safe from WNV contamination. As
well, a number of challenges impeded the ongoing implementation of the 'Buffy
Coat' platelet production method. The organization has nonetheless been able
to use this method to ensure that 100 per cent of whole blood-derived
platelets provided to hospitals is tested for bacterial contamination.
    Canadian Blood Services also took steps to reduce the risk of
Transfusion-Related Acute Lung Injury (TRALI); deployed new equipment to make
the collection of platelets faster, more efficient and more comfortable for
donors; re-branded and increased awareness of the OneMatch Stem Cell and
Marrow Network, resulting in a 12.5 per cent increase in donor registrations;
and adopted a new malaria-deferral policy that is expected to save the
organization $3 million annually.
    The future is looking even brighter, the report states, with Canadian
Blood Services assuming a new mandate to provide national leadership for organ
and tissue donation and transplantation and preparing to implement a 10-year
facilities redevelopment project designed to further improve operational

    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, and provides national
leadership for organ and tissue donation and transplantation. Canadian Blood
Services operates 40 permanent collection sites and more than 19,000 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. For
more information, please visit our Web site at www.blood.ca.

For further information:

For further information: Media Contact: John Bromley, Regional
Communications Manager, (416) 313-4438, john.bromley@blood.ca

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Canadian Blood Services

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