Versiti Blood Center of Wisconsin
Press Release

Versiti Blood Center of Wisconsin urges blood donation to maintain adequate blood supply as coronavirus outbreak continues

 

By - Mar 9th, 2020 11:14 am

Milwaukee, Wis.March 9, 2020 – Versiti Blood Center of Wisconsin is urging community members to schedule and keep their blood donation appointments at donor centers and organized blood drives to ensure the continued adequacy of the blood supply.

“The patients in our communities and our hospital partners continue to rely on the generosity of donors. We can only rely on each other for this precious resource,” said Versiti Chief Medical Officer Tom Abshire, M.D.  “The donation process itself poses no risk of infecting a donor with coronavirus. Donors and our blood drive sponsors should be reassured that attending organized blood drives is safe. Coronavirus is currently not known to infect patients through blood transfusions.”

In some communities, many blood drives have been canceled and some loyal donors are not keeping appointments – both of which will have a negative impact on the blood supply.

It is critically important that healthy individuals continue to donate to minimize disruptions to the blood supply and ensure blood is available for patients. If the outbreak of coronavirus expands, travel-based restrictions could potentially reduce the number of eligible donors and measures suggested to reduce exposure to other people could disrupt community blood drives and donations at centers.

Public health officials are supporting continuation of blood donation as critical to health care in our communities. Since it is the blood currently on hand that saves lives, maintaining a sufficient blood supply is essential to ensure patients in need receive optimal treatment.

Those interested in donating blood are encouraged to call 1-877-BE-A-HERO or visit versiti.org/wisconsin.

Versiti is asking donors who have traveled to China, Iran, South Korea or Italy, to self-defer from donation for 28 days from their date of return.  These countries are in line with the current CDC travel guidelines – the CDC recommending that people avoid nonessential travel to these countries.

About Versiti Blood Center of Wisconsin

Versiti Blood Center of Wisconsin is a not-for-profit organization headquartered in Milwaukee that specializes in blood services, esoteric diagnostic testing, organ, tissue and stem cell donation, medical services and leading-edge research. We advance patient care by delivering life-saving products and services. For more information, visit versiti.org/Wisconsin.

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