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Cornwall among top locations for blood donations in Eastern ON

By Shawna O'Neill

Published on January 2, 2019

The hand of a blood donor squeezing a medical rubber ball.

©Stock photo.

CORNWALL, Ontario – Canadian Blood Services held their first donor clinic of the New Year on Tuesday, Jan. 1 at the Cornwall Civic Complex. 

A total of 119 people attended the clinic on Jan. 1 and 99 were able to make a donation. Mary Ann St. Michael, Territory Manager with Canadian Blood Services, believes these numbers reflected great attendance.  

“We had our first New Year’s Day mobile blood donor centre in Cornwall,” said St. Michael. “Overall, we were happy with the results. A few people were differed for low hemoglobin and having recently travelled to (a potential) malaria zone. We usually see 130 to 140 people come down on the first Tuesday of every month when we visit Cornwall and we collect about 120 donations. It’s pretty impressive actually.”

St. Michael explained that Canadian Blood Services issued a call-out for 120 blood donations in Cornwall prior to the clinic on Jan. 1 as a low turnout was expected during the holiday.

“What we see over the holidays is a dip in people making blood donations, so we anticipated a lower than usual turnout,” said St. Michael. “The need for blood doesn’t take a holiday.”

Blood donations are continually a necessity across the country, specifically the platelet collection, which is only usable for up to seven days. The platelet collection is often used in cancer treatments.

St. Michael believes that Cornwall collects the second most blood donations per month in Eastern ON during donor clinics. The community of Orleans collects a slightly greater amount.

“Monthly in Orleans we collect about 144 units of blood and about 120 units per month in Cornwall,” said St. Michael.

According to St. Michael, blood collected locally is most likely distributed in Eastern ON but could move across the country depending on demand.

Blood donor clinics typically occur on the first Tuesday of every month in Cornwall, held at the Cornwall Civic Complex but moved to the Ramada Inn during the summer.

“Thank you to everyone who came out on New Year’s Day in Cornwall.  We hope people make donating blood their New Year’s resolution for 2019,” said St. Michael.