BY OZMAN OMAR
After 35 years of operations at the Manulife Centre, Canadian Blood Services will give life to its new location at the Hudson Bay Centre on the corner of Yonge and Bloor on March 19, 2018.
The move will provide donors with 4,289 sq. ft of modern space. The clinic has eight beds and can accommodate up to 72 donors a day.
Canadian Blood Services, a non-profit organization that manages blood supplies in Canada hopes a high-density location will attract more donors. The organization is undertaking an ongoing campaign to build awareness of blood inventory shortages.
Michael Betel is the Director of Donor Relations at Canadian Blood Services. He said the organization is open to meeting with local businesses who want to show their support by giving blood.
“We’re looking to work with local businesses to adopt a day for donations, we’ll put up a sign of the business in front of the clinic and posts on social media,” Betel Said.
The organization projects 15,000 units will be donated at this location in 2018 and is hoping to reach 20,000 units annually by 2020.
Betel explained the call for donors is constant and encouraged Canadians to donate on a regular basis.
“The need for blood is ongoing, people watch our advertisements, but that’s not short-term,” he added. “About 40% of the donors give blood just once. We want them to comeback.”
In 2017 blood supplies dipped by about 12,000 units, when an urgent call for donations was announced, supplies were restored.
Last month blood inventory was in decline which prompted Canadian Blood Services to issue another call for donations to stock up and maintain adequate blood inventory.
“Less than 4% of eligible Canadians give blood yet half of Canadians have either needed blood or know someone who has,” said Marco Ouji, Communications Specialist at Canadian Blood Services. “Nationally, 100,000 new donors are needed this year to meet patient needs.”
Blood donors must be 17 years of age or older, weigh at least 110 pounds and provide a photo I.D., and are required to complete a questionnaire, interview, hemoglobin and blood pressure checks.
To protect iron levels, male donors must wait 56 days or 8 weeks between donations, while female donors must wait 84 days or 12 weeks. The average person can donate blood 4 to 6 times a year.
The clinic will also be home to a One Match stem cell self-swabbing station. Registrants must be 17 to 35 years of age. The program is particularly seeking males in that age group.
In addition to the Hudson Bay Centre location, there are two more clinics in the downtown area; at 67 College St. and 163 King St. W. Mobile clinics are also set up around the GTA throughout the year.
Clinic hours for the Hudson Bay Centre location are:
|Monday / Wednesday and Friday||10:00 am to 2:00 pm|
|Tuesday and Thursday||9:00 am to 1:00 pm and 3:00 pm to 7:00 pm|
|Saturday||9:00 am to 3:00 pm|