Exciting New Program for Our AB Donors!


We produce plasma from each whole blood donation and through automated donation.

AB donors are seldom called to donate because only 3% of the population has that blood type. But that is changing in April 2014, when we begin collecting plasma only from qualified AB donors to meet the huge need for this blood product.

Because AB plasma is universally accepted by patients of all blood types, it is often the only type doctors order for fragile newborns.  It is also in high demand for our military, and in trauma situations so dire that blood typing is impossible before blood products must be transfused to save lives.

Only volunteer donors can provide plasma for direct transfusion to patients, and Houchin is the only provider of transfusable plasma in Kern County.

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Plasma can be stored frozen for up to a year.

This cutting edge program can only be a success with the support of our AB donors, who now have a new reason to give and help even more patients with their life saving gift. Plasma-only donations take significantly less time than a platelet donation, but somewhat longer than a whole blood donation.  Since the plasma removed is replaced 100% with saline, there is no significant fluid loss or reactions that may occur with whole blood and platelet donation. Plasma only donors can give as much as 5 units of plasma in just one visit as often as every 28 days.  Better yet, AB plasma can be frozen for up to a year to be ever-ready to assist patients.

We will be calling AB donors who are likely to be able to save more lives through this new technology.  Or, don’t wait! Give us a call if you are an AB donor who would like to maximize your ability to help others through this new program. Just dial 323-4222 and ask for the TRIMA desk.

April 2014 Featured Donor of the Month

photo 3 (14)Well-known for his can do attitude, Tim Kounter is a dedicated blood donor who recently hit his 4 gallon mark. Before reaching this milestone, Tim experienced a few health difficulties. But Tim was determined to become a healthy donor once again.

Tim started donating because he was inspired by Greg Gallion, CEO and President of Houchin Community Blood Bank’s moving speech about the importance of blood donation during an Executives’ Association of Kern County (EAKC) meeting. “I was inspired by hearing members in EAKC talk about their life changing experience through blood donation. And knowing that I am healthy, why not give my lifesaving donation,” explained Tim. Tim had to stop donating for two years because of valley fever, but once he passed his two year mark, he started donating again. “Once you start donating, you can’t stop especially seeing the 10 gallon photos on the wall makes you appreciate how persistent they were to donate.”

Timmy and Jake Kounter

Timmy and Jake Kounter are blood donors thanks to dad Tim’s influence.

Recently, Tim had to put a pause donating again because he underwent a skin cancer treatment. Tim kept coming back to the blood bank to see when he could start donating again. “At first it was only going to be only a two week pause but then it later turned into a 3 month waiting period,” said Tim. Even though the waiting process was long and uncertain, Tim was grateful he was able to donate again and he reach his 4 gallon mark as well. Through all these tribulations, Tim became a true role model for his children as a blood donor, and now they are donors as well.

When Tim is not donating, he enjoys playing tennis with his children and is part of the United States Tennis Association (USTA). Tim encourages others to donate because “people need it and not everyone is eligible to donate, so every time I look at the pre-donation booklet you see the reasons why people can’t donate and this inspires me to continue to give.”



Spring Fling Get-a-Way

Trip to anywhereIf you had $700 towards a trip, where would you go?  One lucky donor will find out by winning our Spring Fling Get-a-Way.  Just donate blood between April 14 and 30 and enter to win!

Just think of the possibilities! Would you choose:

  • A week at the coast?
  • A river cruise?
  • Airfare to Europe?
  • A visit to out-of-town family?
  • A family vacation to Legoland?
  • An escape to Las Vegas?

The choice will be yours if you are the lucky winner! The funds with the travel agent can be used for transportation (except gasoline), hotels, cruises, and tickets for many tours and attractions.

Spring break is a time we need to fill up both donor centers to stay ahead of blood, platelet and plasma needs while school is out and donors are out of town or occupied with the kids. So make a date to get in the drawing for this fabulous prize by clicking here.


Spring Home Spruce Up April’s Prize

home-maintenanceThis is a great time of year to think about getting our homes in shape for summer living. One lucky donor can do just that if they win the drawing prize for April in the ongoing Executives’ Association of Kern County 30/30 Drawing. The prize this month is a home spruce up package valued at $800 from these fine members: Alcorn Aire, Inc, Clean Sweep, and Mahalo Pool Care. The prize consists of:

  • $300 in pool service including water analysis, filter cleaning, pool drain and start-up
  • $250 in annual preventive maintenance on a home heating and cooling system to include a box of high-efficiency filters
  • $250 in tile, stone, and carpet care services

The 30/30 drawing is one of the ways EAKC is celebrating 30 years of business in 2014 networking in our community. We thank these fine business partners for contributing this month’s timely donor drawing prize:.

AlcornAireLogosizedAlcorn Aire, Incorporated is a family owned and operated company providing sales, service, and support for HVAC systems in both business and residential buildings throughout central California. The company was founded in 1988 by Harry Alcorn, who now has over 25 years experience in the air conditioning and heating industry. The business is based on integrity, skilled employees and solid principles. Alcorn is one of the finest providers of HVAC service in Bakersfield because of its core operating principles of fair pricing, time sensitivity, quality, and safety.

Clean Sweep Logo1Clean Sweep is owned by Ken and Kathy Pistoresi, who have helped people with their floor cleaning needs in the Bakersfield area for over 30 years. Ken is a certified expert in stone and tile restoration and cleaning, grout re-color, permanent grout sealer, concrete stains and coatings, and carpet and upholstery cleaning.  Clean Sweep has the expertise to provide warranty service work for major carpet manufacturers, and believes in educating the consumer about needed service to make the best informed decision on possible cleaning and repair techniques. Clean Sweep can advise on the best course of action for the consumer no matter how damage occurred or how serious the flooring or furnishing problem seems.


Mahalo Pool Care  is a professional and reliable pool service company owned by Erik Straub, whose motto is: “Enjoy Your Pool – We’ll Do The Rest”. This family owned business prides itself on being aware of each pool owner’s needs and concerns. They know that besides the wish for a crystal clear pool, their customers want a healthy and enjoyable environment for their families. Their goal is to deliver the best quality pool service possible at the best value.

To enter to win this great prize, all you have to do is donate blood, platelets or plasma during April. To find out more about the EAKC 30/30 monthly prize drawing during 2014 click here.