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Puget Sound Blood Center issues urgent appeal for blood donors

Puget Sound Blood Center has issued an urgent appeal for blood and platelet donors after Western Washington’s blood supply dropped sharply as a result of severe winter weather.

Snow and icy road conditions this entire week have caused the cancellation of almost all blood drives and a drastic reduction in donor visits to regional blood centers. Total loss of donations has reached over 2200 units.

Blood and platelet donations are needed urgently; donors are encouraged to give throughout the next week in order to rebuild supplies to stable levels.

“It takes about 900 donors per day to maintain a sufficient blood supply, but on Wednesday and Thursday fewer than 150 donors were able to give each day,” said Dr. James P. AuBuchon, president and chief executive officer of Puget Sound Blood Center. “This is the biggest weather-related emergency experienced by the Blood Center in decades.”

“We are now receiving help from other blood centers outside the Pacific Northwest to help us maintain a stable blood supply for local hospitals. No matter what the weather is, the demand for blood continues: patients are in hospitals for surgery, ER’s are treating traumatic injuries, and people are needing cancer treatments or organ transplants,” he said.

With the snow turning to rain late Thursday, the Blood Center urgently needs to restore its blood supply.

“As soon as our donors are able to travel safely, we urge them to attend one of our centers or blood drives so we can rebuild a stable blood supply for patients and hospitals in our communities. If they’re not able to attend a center or blood drive on Friday or Saturday, we’re asking them to make a special effort through next week to donate and replenish the blood supply.”

AuBuchon noted a special need for O-negative blood donors, who are universal donors whose blood can be transfused to patients with any other blood type.

“All donors provide a life-saving gift, but O-negative donors are fewer in number and especially important,” he said.

Information about locations and times to give blood can be found at psbc.org.

People can go to one of 11 donor centers in Western Washington, or check for community blood drives underway closer to where they live or work. Appointments are encouraged but walk-ins are welcome, too. Appointments can be scheduled by calling 1-800-398-7888.

“We need to make sure the blood supply is there for people who need it every day, even when weather makes it challenging for our donors to contribute,” AuBuchon concluded.

Donation center locations:

• Bellevue Center

1021 112th Avenue NE

Bellevue, WA 9800

4425-453-4011

• Bellingham Center

Sunset Square

Bellingham, WA 98226

360-671-8848

• Everett Center

2703 Oakes Avenue

Everett, WA 98201

425-740-2909

• Federal Way Center

1414 S 324TH Street Suite B101

Federal Way, WA  98003

• Lynnwood Center

19723 Highway 99, Suite F

Lynnwood, WA 98036

425-774-6366

• Olympia Center

1220 Eastside Street SE

Olympia, WA 98501

360-352-1100

• North Seattle Center

10357 Stone Avenue N

Seattle, WA 98133

206-526-1970

• Seattle Center

921 Terry Avenue

Seattle, WA 98104

206-292-6500

• Silverdale Center

3230 NW Randall Way

Silverdale, WA 98383

360-337-1985

• Tukwila Center

130 Andover Park E

Tukwila, WA 98188

206-241-6300

• Vancouver, WA Donor Center Southwest Washington Blood Program

9320 NE Vancouver Mall Blvd, Suite 100

Vancouver, WA 98662

360-567-4800

 

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