A haemophiliac who survived the 1980s tainted blood tragedy in Canada is fighting to keep companies that pay for blood out of the province.
Andrew Cumming says he wants the B.C. government to ban companies from setting up shop here that pay for blood.
A company called Canadian Plasma Resources operated in Saskatchewan is interested in expanding to other provinces.
He says the tainted blood inquiry made recommendations against this.
“Probably the most important is that we don’t pay for plasma and blood in this country because of the safety issues it brings up.”
Health Minister Terry Lake says more than 80 per cent of the lifesaving plasma used in Canada is imported from U.S. companies and is absolutely safe.
CEO of Canadian Plasma Resource, Barzin Bahardoust, says concerns his company will take donors from Canada Blood Services are unfounded.
Bahardoust contends there are two pools of donors.
He says while the process to give plasma is more time consuming, it does not involve cell loss like blood donation so people can donate as often as once a week.
“When someone donates plasma they can donate as frequently as once a week because there is no cell loss compared to a whole blood donor. So, the frequency of donation is much greater, once a week as opposed to once every eight weeks for male donors and once every 12 weeks for female donors.”
Canada Blood Services would not comment on this story, but last month released a plan to supply 50 per cent of Canada’s plasma by 2024 – up from the current 17 per cent.