Blood donor clinic slated next week

FORT FRANCES—District residents will get a chance to give the “gift of life” next Wednesday and Thursday (April 25-26) when Canadian Blood Services holds its spring donor clinic at Fort Frances High School.
CBS spokesperson Harvey Heather said Friday morning that it’s not too late for interested donors to make an appointment prior to the two-day clinic by calling 1-888-2DONATE (1-888-236-6283) or visiting www.blood.ca
“We really prefer as many people as possible make appointments, but we certainly we have room for walk-in donors, as well,” he noted.
Heather said quite a few people already are booked for both days—127 for the Wednesday and 200 for the Thursday—but acknowledged there’s always a number of “no show donors.”
“We don’t want to make people feel bad if they don’t come in for their appointment. However, what’s happening is, typically, we can get anywhere from 50-70 people that aren’t coming in for their appointments,” he said.
“What we’re asking for is if people can’t make their appointment, that they please call us at our 1-888-2DONATE and let us know,” added Heather. “Or better yet, if someone else can come in their place, that would be good, too.”
The clinic will run Wednesday from 4:30-8:30 p.m. and again Thursday from noon-3 p.m. and 5-8:30 p.m.
A two-day goal of 360 donors has been set for the spring clinic—150 on Wednesday and 210 on Thursday.
“It’s looking very good so far, and we’re looking for another really good turnout in Fort Frances,” said Heather.
Last year, 746 donors came out to the pair of two-day CBS clinics held here, donating a total of 652 units of blood.
Since each unit can be used to assist as many as three people, the donors of Fort Frances and area potentially helped save or improve the lives of as many as 1,956 patients.
The 2006 spring and fall blood donor clinics also saw a total of 102 first-time donors.
CBS would like to see more new donors at next week’s clinic—not only to meet the increasing demand for blood, but to help replace any past donors who no longer may be able to donate due to health reasons or possibly having passed away.
Canadian Blood Services looks after 91 hospitals in Manitoba and Northwestern Ontario.
About 1,200 units per week are needed to meet the demand, with CBS trying to keep enough on hand to supply each of them for four days, noted Heather.
A 2005 survey of Canadians showed 52 percent of people either personally required, or had a member of their family require, donated blood in the past year while 75 percent at least knew someone who did.
But only four percent of eligible donors in Canada give blood.