This summer, more than 7,000 donors are hoped for each week

Montréal, Friday, June 20, 2003—In anticipation of the coming two long weekends, Quebeckers are invited to give blood generously. Since the June2 start of the This summer, we're on the way campaign, Héma-Québec has welcomed some 17,000 blood donors on their chaise lounges at mobile blood drives that have been organized with the help of community partners.

" By scheduling a gift of life in your agenda this summer, each donor can make a difference in maintaining our collective blood reserve at an optimal level," said Dr. Francine Décary, Executive Director, Héma-Québec. She added that, even in summer, patients in Québec's hospitals need blood components on a daily basis.

It is important to keep in mind that it is impossible to contract the West Nile Virus (WNV) by giving blood and that Héma-Québec now has a test that detects the presence of the WNV in donor blood. A telephone hotline is available for more information on the effect of the WNV on blood between 8:30 a.m. and 8:30 p.m. from Monday to Friday, and between 10:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. Just dial 1877VNO-HÉMA (1877866-4362).

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