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An Inside Look of Donating Blood at Dak Minn Blood Bank

An Inside Look of Donating Blood at Dak Minn Blood Bank

Dak Minn Blood Bank is the only hospital-based donor center in North Dakota and one of only 79 active HBDC (hospital-based donor centers) in the U.S. registered with the FDA.

HBDCs were formed to increase the local supply of blood and increase the capacity to collect in times of crisis. Since the late 1990’s there has been a steady decline of independent blood centers in the U.S. Dak Minn Blood Bank has been proudly operating as a part of Altru Health System since 1974.

The Importance of Dak Minn Blood Bank

  • Dak Minn Blood Bank is 1 of 12 facilities who reported providing over 50% of transfusion needs for red cells and platelets. In fact, it provides well over 90% of the total need.
  • Dak Minn Blood Bank supplies blood products to 4 critical access hospitals within the Altru service region.
  • HBDCs are uniquely positioned to embrace new technologies and easily collaborate with physicians regarding blood product needs at their institutions.
  • The presence of an HBDC promotes community engagement, civic partnership, and increases awareness of the blood supply. Dak Minn Blood Bank provides tangible engagement for local businesses, community organizations and the regional workforce to actively participate in business philanthropy, supporting the local hospital and contributing directly to patient care.
  • Local control of a HBDC allows for rapid response to emergent situations.
  • HBDCs that collect a higher proportion of transfusion needs for their hospital insulate them from supply chain disruptions in times of national shortages and provide surge capacity when needed.

“I always say we are “unique” in what we do,” says Terri Hintz, donor, transfusion and tissue service supervisor at Dak Minn Blood Bank in Grand Forks. “These statistics truly show how uniquely special the work we do every day is and what a positive impact it has on patient care at Altru.”

The Blood Donation Process

  1. Donor presents and registers with a photo I.D.

  1. A short questionnaire regarding health history, recent travel, immunizations, etc. is completed by the donor.

  1. A health screening including blood pressure, temperature, pulse and hemoglobin (iron) level is performed.

  1. A phlebotomist cleans the donor’s arm and inserts a sterile needle. In all, the draw takes 5-8 minutes.

  1. After the blood draw is finished it is important to recharge and re-hydrate and donors are encouraged to help themselves to refreshments including water, juice, donuts, popcorn, and other snacks.

Winter is here and blood donations slow down but patients' needs do not. If you would like to donate blood, schedule an appointment online or call 701.780.5433.