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Canadian Blood Services and HÉMA-QUÉBEC thank public for tremendous support

Canadian Blood Services and HÉMA-QUÉBEC thank public for tremendous support

Ottawa, September 13, 2001 - Canadian Blood Services and HÉMA-QUÉBEC have received reports from the American Red Cross, America's Blood Centers, and the New York Blood Center, indicating that supplies of blood from Canada are not needed at this time.

Canadian Blood Services and HÉMA-QUÉBEC will continue to closely monitor the situation in the event that blood is needed in the United States. Thanks to the generosity of the public, Canadian Blood Services and HÉMA-QUÉBEC are prepared and will be able to provide assistance if required.

The public support since September 11 has been tremendous. Approximately 20,000 donations of blood were collected by Canadian Blood Services and HÉMA-QUÉBEC on September 11 and 12, more than double the normal rate of collections. In addition, Canadian Blood Services and HÉMA-QUÉBEC have received hundreds of e-mails and approximately 200,000 calls to their toll-free lines in the past two days. There has been a similarly overwhelming outpouring of support at blood donor clinics in the United States.

The need for blood continues, both for major crises like the one in the United States and for the very personal crises such as cancer, car accidents, and emergency surgeries that call for blood every day. The response in the past two days has been enormously encouraging. We are very grateful for the support of the public. We are now asking people to call and make an appointment to donate in the coming weeks.

Given that the need for blood is always present, we are certain that the donations generously given over the past few days will be used by patients in need.

Information about clinic times and locations can be found on the Canadian Blood Services web site at www.bloodservices.ca and on the HÉMA-QUÉBEC web site at www.hema-quebec.qc.ca. Those wishing to donate are asked to call 1 800 343-7264 in Quebec and 1 888 2 DONATE outside of Quebec to book an appointment in the days and weeks to come.

If you have come forward this week to give blood for the first time, we urge that you please consider giving again in two months when you are once again eligible -- every minute of every day, someone in Canada needs blood. For those of you who were not able to get through on the toll-free lines over the past two days, we ask that you please continue trying in the days and weeks to come.

Canadian Blood Services is a national, not-for-profit charitable organization that manages the blood supply in all provinces and territories outside of Quebec and operates the country's bone marrow donor registry. CBS operates 42 permanent collection sites, 11 bone marrow donor centres and more than 10,000 blood donor clinics annually. For more information about CBS, please visit our web site at www.bloodservices.ca.

HÉMA-QUÉBEC organizes more than 2,000 blood donor drives throughout the province in order to supply the needs of Québec's hospitals. To fulfill its mission, HÉMA-QUÉBEC counts on 270,000 blood donors and on the cooperation of 25,000 volunteers to organize the drives. For more information contact our web site at www.hema-quebec.qc.ca.

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