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Richmond Hill blood centre calls for donors to save lives

Facility aims to collect 300 units to keep up with hospital demand
Jan. 22, 2021
Sheila Wang

Hundreds of appointments are waiting to be filled this January at a blood donor centre in Richmond Hill.

Canadian Blood Services, an essential service provider, is calling on all eligible blood donors to support life-saving care for patients, according to a press release.

While most mobile blood donation events in York Region have remained in operation during the pandemic, they have to reduce the number of appointments to comply with public health guidance.

The Richmond Hill permanent blood donor centre, located at the Hillcrest Mall, has extended its hours in order to maintain a healthy inventory level.

“There is enough blood on the shelves to meet patients’ needs today, but we need all open appointments to be filled to ensure the national supply meets demand and supports patients’ needs during the winter months,” said Malvika Arun, who is the local donor relations territory manager for Canadian Blood Services.

From cancer patients and accident victims to people with blood disorders, the demand for blood never stops and blood products have a limited shelf life, she noted.

Following requests from the Public Health Agency of Canada, the blood services only accept donors with appointments, which helps minimize the number of people at donor centres and allows for pre-screening.

“It is safe to donate blood during COVID-19 and it’s critical for patients,” Arun said.

The Hillcrest Mall Blood Donor Centre at 9350 Yonge St., near Entrance 5 -- external access only -- is open five days a week:

Monday, Tuesday and Thursday: 4 to 8 p.m.;

Friday: 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.;

Saturday: 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Each week, the donor centre aims to collect 300 units of blood to keep up with hospital demand.

Appointments can be booked online at, on the GiveBlood app or by calling 1-888-236-6283.