Canadian Blood Services donations increase in Kelowna, across the country - InfoNews

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Canadian Blood Services donations increase in Kelowna, across the country

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March 26, 2020 - 7:30 AM

Following their nation-wide call for blood donors during the COVID-19 pandemic, Canadian Blood Services reports an increase in donations, including the Kelowna location.

"We did the shoutout on March 16, and since that time we have seen a notable difference in donations," said Gayle Voyer, Territory Manager for Kelowna. 

Although this is good news, it's imperative that these donations continue.

"This effort with COVID-19 is going to be a marathon, not a sprint," said Marcelo Dominguez, Canadian Blood Services representative. "We are urging donors to book appointments over the next few weeks.”

Given the current pandemic, blood donations are just as important than ever. 

"Because blood products have a limited shelf life, demand is constant," explained Dominguez.

Communities surrounding Kelowna will also have the opportunity to donate soon.

In Vernon, a mobile blood clinic will be set up at the Trinity United Church March 30, 31, April 1, 29, 30 and May 1.

In Penticton, the clinic will be at the Penticton Seniors' Drop-In Centre Society April 13, 14.

In Kamloops, the clinic will be at the Oasis Church April 20 to 22.

In West Kelowna, a clinic will be at Lakeview Heights Baptist Church May 4.

Due to the pandemic, Canadian Blood Services had reported a significant increase in cancellations in several cities. 

"[This] was worrying, particularly in light of the impacts that are already being reported by countries being affected by COVID-19," said Dominguez.

Donating blood is perfectly safe at this time, as clinics have implemented thorough screening measures for donors and social distancing measures. As a result, it is now mandatory to schedule an appointment when donating.  

"Whenever we get appointments, it helps us minimize the number of people at donor centres," said Dominguez. "Those appointments also allow people to complete a pre-screening questionnaire, so they can self-defer if necessary.”

To donate, you can book online, download the Canadian Blood Services app, or call 1 888 2 DONATE.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Brie Welton or call (250) 819-3723 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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