The PLASMAVIE Donor Lounge in Gatineau is feeling the impact of the spring floods
Gatineau, August 23, 2019–Since opening its doors three years ago, the PLASMAVIE Donor Lounge in Gatineau had been recording a steady growth in activities, until last spring’s floods intervened. After posting an annual growth rate of almost 18% in 2018, the centre’s team now faces a decrease in the number of donors.
In the first quarter of 2019, donations at the Gatineau Donor Lounge dropped by 191, compared to the same period last year. Many of the first responders and volunteers who took part in disaster relief operations were also blood donors or plasma donors at the rue Bellehumeur centre in Gatineau. They were obviously called away to help with emergency operations in the wake of the spring floods in the region.
The situation has improved since June, but the impact has been significant, especially given the high demand for plasma for the manufacture of medications in Québec and worldwide. Last year, the demand for immunoglobulins (proteins extracted from plasma and used as a medication) alone was up 8% in the Québec health network.
Héma-Québec must work twice as hard to recruit new donors and retain those who are already contributing to the cause. The resulting pressure from the sustained high demand for plasma-derived medications means that the Gatineau Donor Lounge’s goal of collecting 2,000 more donations this year is a challenging one, even before the spring floods became a factor.
Héma-Québec is now launching a special appeal to invite all people in good health who wish to contribute to the life-saving mission to act now.
Héma-Québec’s mission is to efficiently meet the needs of the Québec population for quality blood and other biological products of human origin. Héma-Québec encompasses 1,300 employees and nearly 225,000 blood, stem cell, mother’s milk and human tissue donors, in addition to thousands of blood drive volunteers. Each year, Héma-Québec delivers some 750,000 human biological products to Québec hospitals to meet the needs of patients.
Give blood. Give life.
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