Media advisory: Woodside Resident Set to Make 600th Blood Donation April 1

March 29, 2013
Attention News Desk: Press Release (for immediate release)
Dayna Kerecman Myers (202) 669-2921,
Deanna Bolio (650) 725-3804

STANFORD, Calif. — On April 1, Woodside resident Alden Tagg will make his 600th blood donation, through a process known as apheresis, at the Stanford Blood Center’s new donation center in Menlo Park.

Tagg will donate through a specialized two-hour process that allows the center to collect specific blood components, such as platelets. This process enables donors to give blood as often as 24 times a year, whereas whole blood donors are limited to a maximum of about six donations per year.

Tagg began donating in the community about 40 years ago, inspired by an article in a local paper about children suffering from leukemia. The realization that these children were the same age as his kids at the time, along with the understanding that he could help by donating blood, motivated him to become a blood donor. When the Stanford Blood Center opened its doors in 1978, he was one of its first donors. Since then, he often donated every other week, and said that it simply became a habit. Only one other donor has reached the 600-donation mark at Stanford.

Tagg’s donations have helped countless cancer and leukemia patients, who often depend upon platelet transfusions to help their blood to clot properly. For example, a leukemia patient might have a dangerously low platelet count, caused by the disease itself or by its treatment, which can damage bone marrow and result in hemorrhage. Platelet transfusions can help keep these patients alive while allowing enough time for their therapy to work.

The blood center currently has a need for all blood types, but there is a particular need for Rh-negative blood. Donors should be in good health with no cold or flu symptoms. They must eat well prior to donation, drink fluids and present photo identification at the time of donation. The process takes about an hour. For more information or to schedule an appointment online, please call (888) 723-7831 or visit

WHAT: 600th donation celebration for apheresis donor Alden Tagg

WHO: Media and people interested in donating invited

WHEN: April 1, 3 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. (donation set to begin at 3:30 p.m.)

WHERE: 445 Burgess Drive, Menlo Park, Calif.

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The Stanford University School of Medicine consistently ranks among the nation’s top medical schools, integrating research, medical education, patient care and community service. For more news about the school, please visit The medical school is part of Stanford Medicine, which includes Stanford Hospital & Clinics and Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital. For information about all three, please visit

Stanford Blood Center was created at the Stanford University School of Medicine in 1978 to meet the complex transfusion needs of Stanford Hospital & Clinics and Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital, as well as provide tailored blood products and clinical trial services for school researchers. Today the center provides blood products to seven local hospitals and is a recognized leader in the field of transfusion medicine. More information is available at