The Pacific Northwest’s blood supply is at risk of collapse in coming days. The accelerating number of blood drive cancellations due to the closure of schools, businesses, and events over coronavirus concerns has put nearly 60% of the community’s blood supply in jeopardy. With exponentially decreasing opportunities for the public to donate, our community blood supply is in real danger. For the safety and care of current and future patients, Bloodworks is urging the community to step up to donate and spread word of the current need.
Red Cross Donation Safety Protocols
The top priority of the Red Cross is the safety of our donors, volunteers, employees and blood recipients, and we are committed to transparency with the American public during this evolving public health emergency. There are no data or evidence that this coronavirus can be transmissible by blood transfusion, and there have been no reported cases worldwide of transmissions for any respiratory virus including this coronavirus.
Donating blood is a safe process and people should not hesitate to give or receive blood, platelets, or AB Elite plasma. The Red Cross only collects blood from individuals who are healthy and feeling well at the time of donation – and who meet other eligibility requirements.
At each blood drive or donation center, Red Cross employees follow thorough safety protocols, including:
- Wearing gloves and changing them often
- Wiping down donor-touched areas after every collection
- Using sterile collection sets for every donation
- Preparing the arm for donation with aseptic scrub
- Conducting donor mini-physicals to ensure donors are healthy and well on day of donation
We have also increased our vigilance concerning some of these safety protocols including:
- Enhanced disinfecting of equipment
- Providing hand sanitizer for use before entering and throughout the donation appointment
- Temperature checks before presenting donors enter the blood drive or donation center
- Spacing beds, where possible, to follow social distancing practices between donors
- During this time, blankets typically used by platelet, Power Red and AB Elite donors at Red Cross blood donation centers will be laundered after each use, which may limit the availability. Donors are encouraged to bring their own blankets, but electric blankets and heating pads are not permitted.
- To ensure our staff are healthy each day, we have implemented standard staff health assessments prior to all blood drives.
- only eligible and healthy people are allowed to give blood.
Donors please do not donate today if any of the following apply to you within the last 28 days:
- You traveled to any area with novel coronavirus COVID-19 outbreak.
- You lived with individuals diagnosed with or suspected of having novel COVID-19 infection.
- You have been diagnosed with or suspected of having novel COVID-19 infection.
- If you develop an unexplained illness within the next 28 days PLEASE see your doctor and notify us as soon as possible at (425) 656-3077. By doing so, you may prevent infecting the patient receiving a transfusion of your blood.
How to donate: https://www.bloodworksnw.org/donate/eligibility
Closeby donation locations:
1807132nd Avenue NE
Bellevue, WA 98005
Seattle, WA 98104
For more information and locations on donating blood, please checkout Bloodworks Northwest website at https://www.bloodworksnw.org/about/news/coronavirus.
Thank you for helping save lives in our community!