MaineHealth blood drive volunteer Bonnie Carleton

Blood Drive Meets Critical Community Need

MaineHealth and the American Red Cross launched a 14-week series of blood drives aimed at making up for donations uncollected due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Distance Saves Lives blood drive held April-July collected nearly 1,500 pints of blood, much of which supported local hospitals in a time of critical need.

MaineHealth rallied support from more than two dozen partners, each of whom recruited employees, customers and community members. The drive was structured so that at least one local business, sometimes a group of businesses banding together, was responsible for recruiting 120 donors. To accomplish this during a stay-at-home order took tremendous leadership and spirit.

Not only did the leaders of these companies reassure their communities it was safe to give, the vast majority also showed up to greet others and donate blood themselves.

MaineHealth offered end to-end support that included management, communications, advocacy, volunteers and employees willing to donate on their days off. In addition to helping thousands of people in need, the drive helped recruit many first-time donors, many of whom said they’d be back to give again in the future.

“We are grateful to MaineHealth and the Greater Portland business community who came together so swiftly to help the Red Cross keep lifesaving blood on hospital shelves,” said Stephanie Couturier, interim regional CEO, American Red Cross Northern New England Region. “The Distance Saves Lives blood drive model developed by MaineHealth, and implemented so flawlessly, is being shared with Red Cross regions across the country.”

Thanks to the following businesses who engaged employees and community members to donate during the Distance Saves Lives blood drive.

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