KINGSPORT – Marsh Regional Blood Center, which has played a vital role for more than 60 years in ensuring a sufficient supply of high-quality blood products in the region, is continuing its tradition of service with a more spacious donor center.
The locally based blood supplier, which serves 19 healthcare facilities in Northeast Tennessee and Southwest Virginia, will relocate its Kingsport donor center and blood storage facility to the Medical Office Plaza on the Eastman Outpatient Campus at 111 W. Stone Drive, Suite 300. The new location, where patients previously received infusions from the Wellmont Cancer Institute and compassionate care from Wellmont Medical Associates Oncology & Hematology physicians, is scheduled to open Nov. 4.
“We’re proud of our partnership with our friends and neighbors in the region who have helped us meet the needs of the medical facilities we have been privileged to serve,” said Don Campbell, Marsh Regional’s director. “Now, we have an extremely impressive new facility that will provide our donors with greater comfort and a quicker check-in process as they give the gift of life.”
Marsh Regional has served donors at 102 E. Ravine Road, within eyesight of Holston Valley Medical Center, for about 10 years. While the facility has benefited the community, the new location will elevate the quality of service another level.
The new facility will have four screening rooms, double what is available on Ravine. This will reduce the time for donors to undergo a simple review with Marsh Regional personnel of their health and eligibility to donate.
Marsh Regional will have five blood donor beds and four platelet donor beds on Stone Drive. Campbell said Marsh Regional has room to expand the number of beds as the region’s blood needs grow and more donors come forward.
One of the nice amenities of the new facility is the placement of one television for each bed compared to the facility on Ravine, which requires sharing. Plus, windows abound throughout the donor areas, creating a visually appealing ambiance. The Stone Drive location will also have 13 parking spaced designated solely for donors.
“It’s been an honor for Marsh Regional to serve Kingsport and the rest of the region for generations, but it would not be possible without our donors,” Campbell said. “We’re pleased to invest in this new facility because it will create an even more inviting atmosphere that will hopefully encourage additional people to embrace the opportunity to save as many as three lives each time they donate blood.”
The present phone number, 423-224-5888, will remain, but Marsh Regional encourages donors to start using the new number, 423-408-7500, effective Nov. 4.
In addition to the facility on Stone Drive, Marsh Regional will continue to operate its facility at 1996 W. State St., Bristol. Donors are also welcome to participate in blood drives, held on mobile vehicles throughout the region.
To donate blood, individuals must be at least 17 years old, weigh 110 pounds or more and be in good health. People with a cold, sore throat, fever, flu or fever blisters or who are taking antibiotics may not donate. Donors should eat a balanced meal before giving blood.
Donors with an O-negative blood type are particularly welcome, as their blood can be used for any patient.