Gulf Coast Regional Blood Center is a nonprofit, independent blood center that specializes in accumulating blood donations who then in return provide blood elements, blood, and related services. The blood center meets the blood demands of about 170 health care centers spread across 26 counties. These counties are in the Brazos Valley, East Texas, and Texas Gulf Coast. The Gulf Coast Regional Blood Center was founded in 1975 and has its headquarter situated in Houston Texas Medical Center. It’s also coupled up with Neighborhood Donor Centers totaling up to 17 in the larger Houston area, East Texas and College Station.
Gulf Coast Regional Blood Center services
With a mission to sustain and save lives, they provide sufficient supply of blood components and blood. Other Gulf Coast Regional Blood Center services include:
- Education and registration of patients. This is where they promote awareness as pertains to the importance of peripheral and marrow blood stem cell donations from individuals that will assist patients awaiting transplants. They’re a certified donor facility for the National Marrow Donor program.
- Lab services. Their labs are fully-equipped and comprise of a variety of complex and routine testing services that aim towards exceptional turnaround time, quality processes and one-of-a-kind customer service.
- They also offer continual education services, scholarships and research grants for blood banking professionals.
- Customer connection. These allow their hospital clients to make orders, track their delivery status and have easy access to information on the existing inventory at a moment’s notice.
Neighborhood Donor Centers: Gulf Coast Regional Blood Center
They have advanced Neighborhood Donor Centers designed with the aim of making the blood donation from various locations convenient and comfortable. They spread over a wide geographical area with each Neighborhood Donor Center comprising of knowledgeable and experienced staff that are always available to attend to any queries that you may have and provide quality care to you when you undertake the blood donation exercise.
At their Neighborhood Donor Centers, individuals can enjoy refreshments and state-of-the-art facilities that will keep them relaxed at each location during the process. You can simply select the nearest donor center to know their business amenities, hours and other relevant details.
Gulf Coast Regional Blood Center Donation Types
Gulf Coast Regional Blood Center offers different types of donations. Blood donations are not all the same as many people might think. Some of the donation categories include:
- Whole blood donations.
- Automated donations.
- Source Plasma donations.
- Analogous and direct donations.
Whole blood donations-This is where the blood is extracted and divided into three components. The platelets, plasma, and red blood cells. The three elements are vital and should be kept alive as they have various functions. Plasma helps in the treatment of shock or burn patients. Red blood cells are effective for treatment of surgery patients while plasma is effective for leukemia patients
Automated donations-This type of donation aims at only getting the required blood components from your blood with the rest of the components getting returned to you. The donation of the plasma, platelets or red blood cells can get done by the automated donation, and this will depend on the type of blood you have. The staff will always advise on what donation type is needed during the donation period.
Source Plasma donations-Source plasma donation involves the extraction of the platelets, red blood cells and plasma but also aims at donors being able to give plasma that will be efficient in the production of lifesaving supplements for patients facing various diseases. This is effective as some patients don’t need the blood transfusion; they only require lifesaving therapies known as therapeutic proteins that can only be created using donated plasma.
Autologous and directed donations-This is another donation type that Golf Coast Regional Blood Center which aims at getting you transfused with blood that you had initially given for yourself whereas the directed blood transfusion involves a specific blood transfusion with blood from a family member or a friend.
What to expect during a blood donation process
The blood draw might take a few minutes for it to get done but the whole process might take close to an hour due to some preparations and steps one needs to follow before the donation.
Before the donation day, you should get plenty of rest and visit CFL express the next day to do a health history interview from wherever you are which is usually optional. Also, take some time to get acquainted with the information sheet in regards to the blood donation. You should also have plenty of fluids and diet meals before the procedure.
At the day of the donation, a Golf Coast Regional Blood Center crew staff will do some examination on you to determine whether you’re fit for the donation and if you pass, you’ll get escorted to the donation area where the procedure will get done. The process is simple as a needle gets pierced into your arm and all you need to do is apply muscle tension for the blood to flow down the tube. It takes around 10 minutes for a unit of blood to get filled.
Some snacks will get provided to you after the procedure, and you can rest if you’re feeling dizzy and tired until you’re ready to go. Afterward, take plenty of fluids to replenish your body of the lost fluid.