MetroWest Medical Center to close blood donation program – News – MetroWest Daily News, Framingham, MA

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MetroWest Medical Center, along with hospitals in Framingham and Natick, did not explain its decision to shut down its blood donation program on December 19.

FRAMINGHAM – MetroWest Medical Center is ending its blood donation program, effective Dec.19, according to the center’s statement to the Daily News.

A spokeswoman for the center said hospital officials declined to comment on the reasons for the closure, the possible impacts on patients and the level of blood donation at the hospital to date.

“MetroWest Medical Center is proud of its heritage of providing high quality and compassionate care,” the statement said. “We have decided to discontinue our inpatient blood donation program effective December 19, 2019. We encourage our generous blood donors to continue to donate through the American Red Cross as they will be there. future a supplier of blood products donated to our hospital. “

MWMC includes Framingham Union Hospital and Leonard Morse Hospital in Natick.

A spokeswoman for the Red Cross said its location in Dedham is the organization’s closest blood donation center for those who normally donate to MWMC. The Red Cross mobile blood drive schedule is available on their website, redcrossblood.org.

The MWMC’s decision follows Friday’s decision by the Red Cross to wipe out its community and mobile blood clinics in central and western Massachusetts. A statement from the Red Cross said the decision creates greater efficiency, resulting in reliable and cheaper products and services for patients.

There is still an urgent need for blood, said Red Cross spokeswoman Kelly Isenor.

“The need for blood is constant every two seconds in the United States,” Isenor said. “It has been difficult to reach new donors over the past two years.

Only three percent of nationally eligible donors donate blood, Isenor said.

In Massachusetts, more than 350 units of blood are donated daily to state hospitals in order to meet demand, according to Isenor.

“The need (for blood) is critical,” she said.

MWMC’s decision to shut down its blood donation program will have an impact on patients as there is a nationwide shortage of blood donation, said Camille Williams, head of the blood bank at Milford Regional Medical Center.

The shortage is especially true when it comes to O-positive and O-negative blood groups, Williams said. Fewer donations mean fewer of these guys to shop around.

Type O blood is donated to anyone, Williams said, and hospitals store it for their needs.

The Milford Regional Medical Center receives blood donations exclusively from the Red Cross. The hospital organizes three or four blood drives per month and collects an average of 30 units of blood at each blood drive. One unit is approximately 250 milliliters.

Donated blood is returned by Milford Regional to the Red Cross facility in Dedham, where it is processed and sent to various hospitals, depending on demand.

Donated blood includes red blood cells, platelets and plasma.

Red blood cells are important for emergency rooms to treat patients who suffer from traumatic injuries from accidents, gunshot wounds and stab wounds.

Platelets are necessary for cancer patients, especially to fight infections associated with chemotherapy treatments.

Burn units and neonatal units depend on plasma to treat patients, Isenor said, adding: “There are a lot of different uses for blood, and there is always a need.”

Henry Schwan is the health reporter for the MetroWest Daily News. Follow Henry on Twitter @henrymetrowest. He can be reached at hschwan@wickedlocal.com or 508-626-3964.


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