The Lethbridge Plasma Donor Centre celebrated its one year anniversary on Wednesday. The centre has collected nearly 1,450 donations of plasma so far, which is equal to around 20 thousand litres. Donating is simple, and the plasma goes directly towards helping out Canadians who are in dire need.
Judy Jones, the Associate Director of Donor Recruitment-Plasma Operations for Canadian Blood Services, says if you’ve donated whole blood before, you have also donated a portion of plasma. “We only collect plasma. When a donor comes in, they actually get their red blood cells and their platelets back. We just keep the plasma. This plasma does get sent off for fractionation. Which means it’s made into plasma protein medicines that are then used by Canadian patients with immune deficiencies, or neurological disorders. Most of the patients that use plasma protein products use them on an ongoing basis. It’s not a one-time use. It helps them thrive for the rest of their remaining life.”
There are 500 open appointments at the Lethbridge centre that need to be filled between now and early January. You can visit the Canadian Blood Services website if you are interested in donating plasma.