Hinsdale, IL – A new state-of-the-art blood component collection machine soon to be installed at Adventist Hinsdale Hospital’s Blood Component Center will collect platelets faster, making the experience easier for blood donors. The machine was purchased using funds raised during an event held by the Hinsdale Hospital Medical Staff Auxiliary in honor of Dr. David Calandra, a heart surgeon who treats patients at Adventist Hinsdale Hospital. Calandra is in remission from acute lymphocytic leukemia.
“This machine will allow for twice the amount of platelets to be collected in the same amount of time for patients such as Dr. Calandra,” said Ann Hickey, president of the Hinsdale Hospital Medical Staff Auxiliary board.
Calandra said the fundraiser raised awareness of the need for blood donations.
“We are so thankful that the Hinsdale Hospital Medical Staff Auxiliary purchased this machine, which not only will bring awareness of the need for more blood donors but also will put Adventist Hinsdale Hospital on par with nationally-recognized cancer care centers,” Calandra said.
The October fundraiser, a dinner that included a fashion show and silent auction, raised more than $80,000. The new machine will collect platelets twice as fast as the Blood Component Center’s existing machine, collecting enough platelets for a transfusion from a single donor. The separator automatically removes platelets from the donated blood, returning the rest to the donor. It’s a simple and safe process, said Julie Chin Bloom, donor recruiter.
“Platelet transfusions can make the difference between life and death to someone undergoing treatment for leukemia, cancer or major surgery,” Bloom said.
Cindy Wolfer, clinical nurse supervisor at Adventist Hinsdale Hospital’s Blood Component Center, also thanked the auxiliary for their efforts.
“There just wasn’t enough money in our hospital’s capital budget to purchase this machine on our own,” Wolfer said. “We are grateful to the Medical Staff Auxiliary.”
Calandra underwent chemotherapy at Adventist Hinsdale Hospital in February 2007. He later received a bone marrow transplant and is now recovering at MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston. He and his family plan to return to their Hinsdale home in April. The new machine is scheduled to arrive at the blood center in May.
“The faithful prayers, cards and gifts from our friends at Adventist Hinsdale Hospital and the community sustained us during this difficult time,” said Marcie Calandra, Dr. Calandra’s wife. “Our faith is the foundation of this journey.”
Healthy adults who are at least 17 years old and weigh at least 110 pounds can donate a pint of blood every two months. A single pint of blood can save up to three lives. To donate blood, please call (630) 856-7070 for an appointment.
Adventist Midwest Health includes Adventist Bolingbrook Hospital, Adventist GlenOaks Hospital, Adventist Hinsdale Hospital and Adventist La Grange Memorial Hospital. To find a physician, visit www.keepingyouwell.com.