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Urgent need for blood donors before Labour Day

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OTTAWA, Aug. 13, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- With many blood donors away or busy with summer activities, Labour Day weekend will be a particularly challenging time for Canadian Blood Services to collect blood.

Ty
Donors are urgently needed to help patients like Ty, a 15-year-old from Ontario who was diagnosed with leukemia in June and will require several blood and platelet transfusions as part of his treatment.



Clinic
Add blood donation to your summer plans. More than 22,000 donors are urgently needed by Aug. 26.



Today, the agency announced that more than 22,000 donors are urgently needed across Canada by Aug. 26. Donations now will help ensure the national blood inventory can meet patient needs for the rest of summer.   

"While Canadians enjoy summer pastimes leading up to and during the last long weekend of the season, we're urging them to add blood donation to their plans," says Rick Prinzen, Canadian Blood Services' chief supply chain officer and vice-president of donor relations.

All donors are urged to get involved, particularly donors with Type O blood. O-negative blood is always in demand by hospitals because it is the only type compatible with all other blood types. In an emergency, when seconds count and there is no time to check blood type, patients receive O-negative blood. 

"Giving blood is a lifesaving habit that will make a real difference in a stranger's life," says Prinzen. "New donors are fundamental to meeting Canada's blood needs over the longer term. If every donor brings a friend to donate, or encourages others to give life, they can have a tremendous impact on the supply system. We are urging people to donate by Aug. 26."

As the summer winds down, and September approaches, Canadians are returning to regular routines. Many families will be getting ready for back-to-school time. While most kids prepare for class, some will be focused on overcoming an unexpected health condition.

Patients like 15-year-old Ty from the Barrie area in Ontario, might not be returning to school in the fall. Ty was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia in June. As his friends are preparing for the new school year, Ty is counting on the generosity of strangers to give him the strength to fight for life itself.

"Ty is in great spirits and continues to fight this with everything he has," says Patrick Armatage, Ty's father. "This next leg of our journey is called "intensification" and will last eight months. During this phase, Ty's immune system will be almost non-existent as his care team tries to find and kill the cancer cells hiding in his body. We've been told to expect several blood and platelet transfusions during this phase. We're grateful to blood donors for their support for Ty and other patients in need." 

People who cannot donate blood can encourage others in their networks to give on their behalf. Making an appointment to donate has never been easier.

Visit blood.ca, download our GiveBlood app or call 1-888-2-DONATE to find a nearby donation site. Walk in appointments are also available at all locations.

About Canadian Blood Services
Canadian Blood Services manages the national supply of blood, blood products and stem cells, and related services for all the provinces and territories (excluding Quebec). We operate an integrated, pan-Canadian service delivery model that includes leading an interprovincial system for organ donation and transplantation. Our national scope, infrastructure and governance make us unique in the Canadian healthcare landscape. Canadian Blood Services is regulated as a biologics manufacturer by Health Canada and primarily funded by the provincial and territorial ministries of health. Canadian Blood Services is a not-for-profit charitable organization.

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FOR MORE INFORMATION
TEL. 1-877-709-7773
EMAIL media@blood.ca

Photos accompanying this announcement are available at

http://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/c563de15-37e8-47a3-bfef-7295e630fc6e

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