Port Alberni’s Daphne Dobie is attended to by a Canadian Blood Services nurse during a Blood Donor Clinic at the Italian Hall on Wednesday, Feb. 21. ELENA RARDON PHOTO

Donors in Port Alberni called on to give blood

Donation event scheduled for April 7 to 9 at Italian Hall Events Centre

Despite the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Canadian Blood Services is hoping people can come out to a blood donor clinic in Port Alberni from April 7-9.

Canadian Blood Services will be back in the community for the first time after cancelling an event in January due to inclement weather.

According to Gayle Voyer, territory manager with Canadian Blood Services, the agency has added a few new measures to protect donors during the COVID-19 pandemic, including additional cleaning practices. There will also be active wellness screenings at the entrance of the Italian Hall Events Centre to ensure donors are healthy. Chairs in waiting areas will be set apart from each other and donors will be set six feet apart from one another while donating.

“Things are more spread out to make sure we’re practicing social distancing,” Voyer said.

As always, Canadian Blood Services is asking only healthy people to donate blood.

“We want to make sure people are feeling well, making sure they don’t have any flu or other illness symptoms,” said Voyer.

Back in March, Canadian Blood Services put out a bulletin urging the public to continue donating blood in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. The agency was worried about a spike in appointment cancellations.

READ MORE: Canadian Blood Services worried about appointment cancellations during pandemic

Since then, Voyer says there has been “more interest” in donating blood.

“We’ve definitely seen a notable increase in donations since then,” she said. “It’s an ongoing need.”

The Port Alberni blood donor clinic will take place at the Italian Hall (4065 Sixth Avenue) from Tuesday, April 7 to Thursday, April 9. Voyer says that Tuesday is already “well-booked” but Canadian Blood Services is still looking for donors for April 8 and 9.

The clinic will not be taking walk-ins. If you want to book an appointment, call 1-888-2-DONATE (1-888-236-6283), visit blood.ca or download the GiveBlood app.

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