This summer, Héma-Québec invites 91,000 donors to take a moment to give the gift of life

Montréal, Monday June 2, 2003 - Everyone is invited to generously donate blood from June 2 to September 7. To meet the blood component needs of patients in Québec hospitals during the summer season, Héma-Québec hopes to welcome some 91,000 blood donors. This year, clinics will be held under the theme This summer, we're on the way. Héma-Québec's team will be meeting vacationers at one of the 500 mobile clinics organized in partnership with communities throughout the province.

The next 14 weeks will be crucial to maintaining acceptable blood reserve levels; Héma-Québec hopes to welcome more than 6,500 donors willing to give the gift of life on its chaise lounges. "A 60-minute blood donation can contribute to saving up to four lives," this according to Dr. Francine Décary, Héma-Québec's executive director, who also reminds us that blood is an essential, perishable and irreplaceable product.

New this summer, Héma-Québec will set up a hotline for people wanting more information on the impact of the West Nile Virus on blood donations. The hotline can be reached by dialing 1 877 VNO-HÉMA (1 877 866-4362).

Created in September 1998, Héma-Québec's mission is to efficiently provide adequate quantities of safe, top-quality blood components and substitutes to meet the needs of all Québeckers, as well as to provide and develop expertise and services, along with specialized and innovative products, in the fields of transfusion medicine and human tissue transplantation.

Give blood. Give life.

- 30 -