Is the Nation's Blood Supply as Important as the Opioid Crisis? Top Federal Health Officials and Blood Banking Leaders Say Yes - March 20, 2019

US health official and Bloodworks Northwest CEO tell Congress the need for more young donors has never been greater

SEATTLE, March 20, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Dr. Brett Giroir, the assistant secretary of health at the US Department of Health & Human Services, and Bloodworks Northwest president & CEO Dr. James P. AuBuchon will address lawmakers and the largest network of nonprofit community blood centers in the country about the chronic shortages America's blood centers are facing at America's Blood Centers Annual Meeting, March 23–26 in Washington, DC.

Shortages due to the current donor base aging out are making the maintenance of an adequate blood supply impossible, creating a national public health issue that is arguably on par with the opioid crisis. On March 25, Dr. Giroir will speak to these issues and also the efforts that are being made to reach younger donors, such as Bloodworks Northwest's mobile app, which now has over 11,000 downloads, mostly millennials and first-time donors. Later that day, Dr. AuBuchon will receive the Bill Coenen President's Award for lifetime achievement from America's Blood Centers.

The following day on Capitol Hill, Dr. AuBuchon will be part of team from Bloodworks Northwest bringing Washington State congressional leaders up to speed on challenges that need to be addressed in the US blood supply.

Dr. AuBuchon has served as a member of the Advisory Committee on Blood and Tissue Safety and Availability of the US Department of Health and Human Services and has chaired the Biomedical Excellence for Safer Transfusion Collaborative, an international research group dedicated to improving transfusion. He is a past president of the AABB (formerly known as the American Association of Blood Banks). Later this year, after ten years heading Bloodworks Northwest, Dr. AuBuchon is retiring.

Dr. AuBuchon and Mark Gilman from Degree37, the Western Washington-based company that developed the Bloodworks app, will be in Washington, DC and available for interviews March 21-26.

About Bloodworks Northwest
Bloodworks (formerly Puget Sound Blood Center) is backed by 75 years of Northwest history and 250,000 donors. It is local, nonprofit, independent, volunteer-supported and community-based. A recognized leader in transfusion medicine, Bloodworks serves patients in more than 90 hospitals in Washington, Oregon and Alaska — partnering closely with local hospitals to deliver the highest level of patient care. Comprehensive services include blood components, complex cross-matching, specialized lab services for organ transplants, care for patients with blood disorders, and collection of cord blood stem cells for cancer treatment. Bloodworks Research Institute performs leading-edge research in blood biology, transfusion medicine, blood storage and treatment of blood disorders. Patients with traumatic injuries, undergoing surgeries or organ transplantation, or receiving treatment for cancer and blood disorders all depend on our services, expertise, laboratories and research. For more information, visit bloodworksnw.org

Contact information:

John Yeager
Senior Media Content Strategist
425-765-9845
JYeager@BloodworksNW.org

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SOURCE Bloodworks Northwest

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