Avera McKennan Hospital Blood Bank
Avera McKennan Hospital & University Health Center Blood Bank is a fully licensed, full service blood bank accredited by the American Association of Blood Banks (AABB), and College of American Pathologists (CAP) and is licensed and inspected by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
The blood bank provides collection, transfusion, and transplant services. Nearly 12,000 donor units are collected annually from donors in the donor room and on bloodmobiles throughout the community. The donor units are processed into red blood cells, plasma, and platelet products.
A unique platelet apheresis program is available for platelet and/or blood products from a single donor. This process allows a single blood donor to donate the equivalent of up to 18 regular donors for selected products such as platelets. This process maximizes the lifesaving donation.
Awards & Accreditations
Avera McKennan Laboratory is the first hospital laboratory in the United States to achieve Accreditation to the gold standard ISO-15189 Quality and Competence international standard in both Clinical and Anatomic Pathology.
Avera McKennan Laboratory is also accredited by the American Association of Blood Banks (AABB) and the Foundation for Accreditation of Cellular Therapy (FACT).
Apheresis Donor Perks
- First Time Pheresis Donor: Green, 32oz screw top water bottle, and many mini-drawings throughout the year. Also, ask us about referral perks!
- Pheresis Donors:
Every 4th donation: $10 HyVee Gift Card.
Every 12th donation: $25 Gas Card.
- Lunch and a Life: Give a pheresis donation between 10:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. and have lunch on us!
Perks apply to in-house, apheresis donors only, not mobile drives. Does not apply to employees on the Pheresis Donor (PhD) Program.
Apheresis donations require appointments.
Learn more about this life-saving program:
There is no way to manufacture blood products. The community depends on dedicated donors like you to maintain the blood supply. Follow a link below to learn more.
What is Apheresis?
Apheresis Explained What is Apheresis?
Apheresis is a special kind of blood donation that allows whole blood to be withdrawn from a donor and separated into its component parts with all but the needed component being returned to the donor.
During your donation, blood is drawn from one arm and channeled through a sterile, single-use tubing set to an automated system. The automated system separates and collects the components most currently needed, and safely returns the remaining blood components back to you.
Components of Blood
Platelets are essential for blood clotting. They are regularly needed to support cancer therapy, open-heart surgery, blood disorders and organ transplants. Platelets must be transfused within 5 days; requiring the supply to be constantly replenished. Donors can give platelets up to 24 times per year. Platelets are not type sensitive.
Red blood cells carry oxygen to all parts of the body. They are most needed after significant blood loss through trauma, surgery or anemia. A red blood cell donation is typically transfused within 5 days, so the need for this component is ongoing. Red blood cells can be donated every 56 days. Blood type O- is the universal red blood cell donor.
Plasma is the liquid portion of the blood containing critical clotting factors. Plasma is used to treat burn victims, patients with certain bleeding disorders and for plasma exchanges. Plasma can be donated every 4 weeks. Blood type AB is the universal plasma donor.
Why is Blood Separated?
Whole blood is made of several components including red blood cells, white blood cells, platelets and plasma. Each component has a special use. Apheresis procedures are used to collect platelets, plasma and red blood cells. Each unit of whole blood contains only two tablespoons of platelet concentrate. Six to eight regular whole-blood donations would be needed to supply enough platelets for one patient.
Why Patients Need Your Apheresis
Donation... By knowing local hospital's needs and using Apheresis donations, we are able to tailor your donation to patients needs. The patient benefits because they are receiving your life-saving blood. It decreases the likelihood of transfusion reactions that can happen when receiving blood products from multiple donors. It also allows donors to donate up to 24 times per year.
Pheresis Donor Program
Pheresis Donor Program
Every 3 seconds someone needs blood products, yet less than 5% of the population donates. That isn't enough. The purpose of this program is to provide a steady supply of single donor platelets and red cell products for Avera McKennan Hospital & University Health Center patients.
Advantages of Pheresis Donations
- 1 single donor platelet product is equivalent to 6-10 random donor pooled platelet products
- A pheresis donor can provide up to 3 single donor platelet products at each donation (provided platelet count is adequate). A multi product donation only needs to be tested once thus becoming more cost effective (up to 3 products with just 1 testing).
- Single donor platelets offer a reduced chance of allo-immunization, reduced chance of product bacterial contamination and a reduced exposure to infectious agents.
- During a pheresis donation, multiple products can be obtained such as:
- single or double pheresis red cell product PLUS single or double single donor platelet product
- single red cell product, single platelet and single plasma
- triple platelet product
- Single donor platelets are a safer product for cancer patients and those with compromised immune systems such as transplant patients, etc.
Requirements for Donation
Requirements for Apheresis donations are very similar to whole blood requirements with the addition of the following:
- Eat well and drink plenty of fluids (minimize caffeine intake before).
- Increase calcium intake a few days before donation.
- NO aspirin 72 hours prior; NO Ibuprofen 24 hours prior.
- Allow 1.5 hours for the procedure. Pop, juice, cookies and TV provided during donation time.
- Please remember to bring your driver's license or donor card every donation.
Because of Donors like You
A Special Kind of Donation
Zach Shaw is getting a second chance at life because of blood donors like you. He has a rare blood disorder that requires him to need blood transfusions regularly. "Blood donors have no idea the gift they're giving. Just one unit of blood is such a blessing to us. If people didn't go to donate so graciously, Zach would have died," said Shaw.
Liza Maio has spend many hours helping other by recruiting blood donors, which ended up helping save her own life. Liza suffered life-threatening dehydration that laid her up for many weeks; she received blood transfusions that helped restore her health. Her friendly personality and her immense energy are a welcoming sight for donors, who she now cannot give enough gratitude for the anonymous donors like you who helped save her life.