Blood donor clinics coming to Amherst

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AMHERST – We’re all probably familiar with the commercial; people who survived cancer or a near fatal car accident tell us how important it is to roll up your sleeves and give a little blood. For the most part, many people are giving.

Several Amherstonians have already booked their appointments for the upcoming blood clinics on Feb. 11 and 12, but Corey Matheson with Canadian Blood Services said they could always use more.

“Ideally, it would be nice to have 216 (donors) each day,” said Matheson. “I know it sounds like a lot but when it comes to no shows and cancellations and that sort of thing, we always have extra spots in there just to cover ourselves, to make sure we get close to looking for.”

Realistically, in order to meet their donation goal, Matheson they would actually need 120 donors each day.

“That’s what our hospitals require. They give us numbers, they need this many donations on this day to meet their demand.”

This time around, Matheson said there isn’t really a specific blood type the clinic is looking for. However, they always welcome as many O-negative donors as possible.

“We love them because they are the universal donor,” he said. “But AB-negative is the rarest blood type. It’s only 0.5 per cent of the population. But the beauty of the O-negative is that they can donate to the AB-negative. The reason who sometimes mention we need O-negative is because they can give to anyone.”

Matheson said once donors discover they are O-negative, they tend to regularly make a blood donation. Because of their blood type’s universal status, Matheson said he has come up with a nickname for those donors.

“We call them kind of like the Super Hero of Blood Donation,” he said. “That’s what I tell people when I meet somebody out at the clinic and I found out that they’re O-negative. It’s true because they sort of are. They can donate to any body but they can only receive blood that’s O-negative.”

Anyone interested in booking their appointment for the up coming blood clinic can call 1-888-2DONATE. Appointments can always be made online at www.blood.ca

jturner@amherstdaily.com

Organizations: Canadian Blood Services

Geographic location: Amherst

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