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Urgent Need for Blood & Platelets Continues!
Automated Donations Help Boost the Low Supply

Summer 2014


The urgent need continues for volunteer blood donors of all types, as well as platelet donors. The summer shortage has worsened, with less than a one-day supply of blood currently on Community Blood Services’ shelves.

“Often we can import blood from centers elsewhere in the U.S. to help make up the shortfall but many centers are facing similar problems and don't have the blood to sell to us. We need local volunteer donors to come out now so we can continue to meet the needs of patients in our community hospitals,” said Kathleen McKenna, vice president of operations at Community Blood Services. The weekend schedule is especially light on donors, she said.

Donors are asked to click here for hours and click here to make an appointment to donate at the Paramus Donor Center in the Bergen Medical Center, 1 West Ridgewood Avenue, Suite 208; the Lincoln Park Donor Center, 63 Beaverbrook Road, Suite 304; or at the Montvale donor room, 102 Chestnut Ridge Road. Or donors can call 201-251-3703.

“One way we are trying to address the summer shortfall is by increasing the number of donations made using our automated technology. By asking our donors to make automated donations we are able to collect more life-giving products during one donation and better target our hospitals’ needs,” McKenna said.

Automated donations allow multiple products to be collected during one donation (double red cells, platelets and/or plasma), therefore helping even more patients who need transfusions.

There has been an ongoing shortage of Type O negative blood, the universal blood type that can be used for all other blood types during emergencies like car accidents and for premature babies. Only 7 percent of the population has Type O negative blood which means the supply must continuously be replenished. In addition platelet donors are urgently needed to treat cancer patients, as well as male plasma donors for trauma and burn patients.

To donate, donors must be healthy, 17-75 years old (16 years old with parental permission) and weigh at least 110 pounds. Donors will receive complimentary non-fasting cholesterol and glucose screenings at the time of their donations.

Community Blood Services provides blood and blood products for patients in 18-plus hospitals in New Jersey and New York, including Hackensack University Medical Center, St. Joseph’s Healthcare System in Paterson/Wayne and The Valley Hospital in Ridgewood.

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