Tuesday, Jun 18 2013 08:55 AM

Houchin low on blood, calls for donors to step up

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    By Casey Christie / The Californian

    One of Houchin Community Blood Bank's locations is at 11515 Bolthouse Drive in southwest Bakersfield.

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  2. 2 of 2

    By Casey Christie / The Californian

    Houchin Community Blood Bank is located at 11515 Bolthouse Drive.

    click to expand click to collapse
BY RACHEL COOK Californian staff writer

Houchin Community Blood Bank’s supplies are suffering as the summer unfolds, dwindling to the point that the blood bank has had to request blood from other facilities.

The blood bank has tapped sister blood banks around the state for O- blood, but the bank is also in need of A-, B- and O+ blood and platelets as well.

“It’s pretty rare (to get blood outside the community) because we try to be the sole provider of Kern County’s blood supply,” said Joy Invina, Houchin’s community development coordinator.

The blood bank’s stocks usually run low in the summer as people head out of town for vacation and neglect to donate, Invina said.

The blood bank also takes a hit when school is out. Houchin’s high school mobile blood drive events provide about 20 percent of the bank’s blood, Invina said.

New donors and repeated donors are encouraged to head to one of Houchin’s locations to give. Donors can stop in or call 323-4222 for an appointment.

The donation center at 5901 Truxtun Ave. is open from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Thursday, and 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday. The new donation center at 11515 Bolthouse Drive is open 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday and Wednesday, 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesday and Thursday.

Mobile drives are also booked around Kern County and listed at under the “Blood Drives” calendar. Contact Carola Enriquez, Houchin’s director of community development, at 378-6224 or to find out about a mobile drive in your area or to host a blood drive.


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