Journey of Blood

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How did that unit of blood get here? Most people don’t think about or realize exactly where that unit of blood they received came from and just how it got there. There is an elaborate journey of coordination and effort in order for that life-saving unit to be available. Here is a brief overview of the journey from donor to hospital:

journey of blood

1: Marketing
Immense communication efforts are involved to get donors in the door. To meet our hospital needs, we have about 650 blood drives every week and we need to let donors know when and where they are.

More than 75 million donor communications are sent out each year!

2: Collections & Operations
To make it easy for donors, we maintain more than 200 blood mobiles and 96 donor centers. All of these locations are fully staffed and stocked with supplies.

We use about 8 million pairs of rubber gloves every year!

3: Donor Needs
Once the donor arrives, they are provided drinks and snacks as well as a thank you in the form of an incentive, from T-shirts to gift cards.

Last year, we handed out 648,878 bottles of juice, 831,792 bottles of water and 1,302,720 cookies! 

4: Transportation
Once the donation is complete, a courier takes the unit to a processing hub while the sample tubes are sent to the lab for testing. When everything is clear, the couriers then deliver orders to our hospitals.

Our couriers drive about 2 million miles a year!

5: Lab Testing
Samples from every unit of blood are sent to a central lab to undergo a battery of 18 tests, including HIV, Hepatitis and West Nile Virus.

Every year we use about 4 million test tubes!

6: Processing and Inventory
Once the components arrive to our Manufacturing laboratories, blood is processed to its usable components, labeled once test results and lot release are performed. Blood products are sent to distribution HUBs awaiting for hospital orders.

7: Online Ordering
Hospitals place their orders online. The order is transmitted to our hub for order processing.

8: Inventory Visibility
Hospitals have full visibility on the status of orders. Many hospitals’ inventory are visible to the blood center which increases the efficient product management.

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Journey Of Blood


How You Can Help

Blood Donor Basics

Blood Donor Basics

Your health is important to us, and we want to help you maintain it.

Blood Donation FAQs

Hosting a Blood Drive

Your help as our community partner is essential to the blood supply.

Donation Methods

Donation Methods

Let your blood type lead the way to donate your powerful lifesaving gift.

Donation Methods

Share Your Story

Help your community understand the impact blood donation has.

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