Success Story: Stanford Blood Centerby SRP on December 1, 2023
Those who work in the Research Park will frequently see, and often visit, a Stanford Blood Center mobile docked at The Hub or other sites around the Park. The hard-to-miss red and white Bloodmobiles—which set out from the Center’s headquarters in the Research Park—provide an opportunity for volunteers to donate blood safely and comfortably—and play a vital role in delivering blood supplies to Bay Area hospitals and patients. What donors might not know is that they are engaging with a proud Stanford legacy, one that extends beyond the Center’s mission-critical blood donation program.
Stanford Blood Center dates back to 1978, when the Center was launched within the Department of Pathology at Stanford University School of Medicine. At the time, advancements in blood transfusion, blood testing, and organ transplantation medicine led to increasing and increasingly complex blood transfusion needs for patients at Stanford Health Care and Lucile Salter Packard Children’s Hospital. The Center was opened to meet these needs—which it did effectively in its earliest days and continues to do to this day.
Essential to the Center’s ongoing success is the team’s capacity to keep pace with medical advancements and technologies. Every time healthcare has evolved and changed the demands and requirements of blood transfusion, Stanford Blood Center has evolved in kind as well. It has done so through a robust research and development vertical in partnership with the University and its hospitals. Always striving to remain at the leading-edge of blood donation, testing, and transfusion medicine, the Center has created many of the health and safety protocols that would become industry standards.
Among its many achievements that helped push the industry forward, in 1983 the Center was the first in the country to screen for AIDS-contaminated blood, two years before the AIDS virus antibody test was developed. A few years later, the Center was again a pioneer, this time as the first in the country to screen donors for a virus believed to cause a form of adult leukemia. Today, the Center continues to innovate. More recently, it has built a red blood cell and multiple plasma collection program to meet the growing oncology, bone marrow, and solid organ transplant needs across Bay Area hospitals.
From day one, Stanford Blood Center has been committed to fostering healthy and compassionate communities. Through formal relationships with local community organizations and businesses, the Center offers educational opportunities to increase awareness and invite the community to donate crucial blood supplies at one of their three donation centers. And, of course, they happily and routinely deploy their Bloodmobiles throughout the Bay Area to make donation as seamless as possible for the volunteers they so deeply appreciate.