Rising demand for blood ushers in National Blood Donor Week, June 8-14, (Ryan Uytdewilligen/Langley Advance Times)

Rising demand for blood ushers in National Blood Donor Week, June 8 to 14

COVID inspired thousands of Canadians to donate, including many who contributed for the first time

National Blood Donor Week is an opportunity to extend heartfelt thanks to all donors and partners across the country for their commitment, agility and lifesaving contributions to Canada’s Lifeline during the COVID-19 pandemic and throughout the year.

This year, however, Canadian Blood Services is also reminding Canadians how much their blood donations continue to matter, especially now.

Rick Prinzen, Canadian Blood Services chief supply chain officer, said demand for blood in the last two weeks has returned to near pre-COVID-19 levels as hospitals resume elective surgeries and procedures that were put on hold due to the pandemic.

“Meanwhile, to maintain physical distancing and other safety measures in our donor centres, how much blood we can collect across the country is currently at 90 per cent,” Prinzen added. “This gap is drawing down the national blood supply and we need donors to help replenish it by filling all available slots.”

COVID-19 has inspired thousands of people to help sustain the blood system by joining Canada’s Lifeline, including many new donors who have contributed for the first time.

Canadian Blood Services recorded a 20 per cent year-over-year increase in first-time donors in the six weeks from mid-March to the end of April when impacts from the pandemic began.

At the same time, donors and frontline workers were challenged to be flexible and to adapt to changing circumstances to ensure patients in Canada continued to receive lifesaving support where and when they needed it.

Walk-ins were cancelled as part of COVID-19 safety measures.

READ MORE: Giving blood during the coronavirus pandemic

Donors must now book their appointments in advance, answer additional questions related to COVID-19, pass additional health checks, and wear masks.

“We cannot predict how many surgeries and medical procedures will occur, but we know we need donors to book and fill every available appointment over the next few weeks and months to ensure there is an adequate supply of blood products for patients in the longer term,” Prinzen added.

Legislated by the Government of Canada in 2008, National Blood Donor Week, June 8 to 14, recognizes and celebrates donors who selflessly help their fellow citizens.

World Blood Donor Day falls on Sunday, June 14.

“In many ways, COVID-19 turned our world upside down, but it also proved that patients in Canada can still count on the unwavering support of donors,” Prinzen said. “Patients undergoing surgery and cancer treatment, accident victims, and people with blood disorders rely on blood, platelets and plasma transfusions every day. Many of those procedures were postponed or delayed during the acute phase of COVID-19.”

Visit https://www.blood.ca to book an appointment.

_________________________________

Is there more to this story?

Email: ryan.uytdewilligen@langleyadvancetimes.com

Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter

_________________________________

blood donorCoronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Blueberries ripen as u-pick starts in Langley

The official Blueberry Day is to be held – online – on July 15

Tree roots cause sewage chaos for Langley family

The Murrayville homeowners asked for the removal of a willow tree on Township land

VIDEO: Former Abbotsford resident giving away $1,000

Langley native Alex Johnson creates elaborate treasure hunt to give away cash

B.C. records 62 new COVID-19 cases, two deaths since Friday

Province has just over 200 active cases

‘Trauma equals addiction’ – why some seek solace in illicit substances

Part 2: Many pushed into addiction by ‘toxic stress,’ says White Rock psychologist

Hotel rooms for B.C. homeless too hasty, NDP government told

Businesses forced out, but crime goes down, minister says

Wage subsidy will be extended until December amid post-COVID reopening: Trudeau

Trudeau said the extension will ‘give greater certainty and support to businesses’

B.C. government prepares for COVID-19 economic recovery efforts

New measures after July consultation, Carole James says

COVID-19 exposure on Vancouver flight

The Air Canada 8421 flight travelled from Kelowna to Vancouver on July 6

Double homicide investigation leads Vancouver police to Chilliwack

A VPD forensics unit was in Chilliwack Saturday collecting evidence connected to East Van murders

Tree planters get help with COVID-19 protective measures

Ottawa funds extra transportation, sanitizing for crews

UPDATE: Abbotsford shooting victim was alleged ‘crime boss,’ according to court documents

Jazzy Sran, 43, was believed to have been smuggling cocaine across the border

Most Read