WELLINGTON COUNTY – Officials with Canadian Blood Services (CBS) are concerned by a recent spike in appointment cancellations in several areas due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Dr. Isra Levy, CBS’ vice-president of medical affairs and innovation, says it is safe to donate blood during the crisis, noting robust cleaning and infection-control practices, as well as ongoing screening of donors.
“Our donor centres are islands of wellness within Canada’s health system,” stated Levy. “They are not places where sick people gather.”
CBS urges all healthy eligible donors to book and keep appointments, noting the need is constant for blood, stem cells, plasma and organ and tissue donors.
Locally, while a March 31 blood donor clinic in Fergus has been cancelled (the next one is April 30), CBS is encouraging residents to make donations at its permanent centre in Guelph.
The centre, located at 130 Silvercreek Parkway, is open on Tuesdays from 8am to 12pm, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 2:30 to 7:30pm, and Saturdays from 8am to 1pm.
Canadian Blood Services operates a national blood inventory where products are regularly shifted around the country to meet hospital and patient needs.
The inventory is currently strong, but the recent increase in cancellations is worrying, particularly in light of blood shortages being reported in other countries affected by COVID-19.
More information on COVID-19 is available at blood.ca/covid19. To make an appointment to donate, download the GiveBlood app, call 1 888 2 DONATE (1-888-236-6283) or book now at blood.ca. Walk-in appointments are also available at all locations.