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Mississippi Valley Regional Blood Center to merge with Community Blood Services of IllinoisDavenport, Iowa – Mississippi Valley Regional Blood Center (MVRBC) has announced plans to merge with a fellow not-for-profit community blood center based in Urbana, Illinois. Today’s formal announcement of the merger with Community Blood Services of Illinois (CBSI) comes after 18 months of research and planning by officials from both blood centers and each organization’s Board of Directors, both of which unanimously approved the plan to merge earlier this month.
Established in 1972, CBSI is the provider of all voluntarily donated blood used by patients at the community hospitals in Champaign-Urbana, Charleston-Mattoon, Danville and Effingham, Illinois. Following completion of the merger, CBSI will become established as a division of MVRBC and will continue to supply the five east-central Illinois hospitals that currently receive blood components from the Urbana-based Blood Center. All 71 CBSI employees will be retained in the merger.
MVRBC provides blood for 75 hospitals in Illinois, Iowa, Missouri and Wisconsin and has approximately 500 employees. The Blood Center’s headquarters is in Davenport, Iowa and MVRBC has administrative offices in Springfield and Edwardsville, Illinois; Ottumwa, Iowa and St. Louis, Missouri. In 2010, MVRBC merged operations with Springfield-based Central Illinois Community Blood Center. The combined organization collects blood at 15 fixed site Donor Centers and on more than 3,500 mobile blood drives held each year.
Pat Kovar, President and CEO of CBSI, says the merger aligns with an increasing trend of consolidation within the health care industry. “This trend includes hospitals merging into multi-hospital systems and blood centers merging to serve the changing hospital market,” said Kovar, who also identified cost containment and long-term stability as primary benefits of the merger.
Infectious Disease Testing of CBSI blood donations will move to Midwest Regional Blood Testing Services (MRBTS), a laboratory within the MVRBC headquarters. By increasing the MRBTS laboratory testing volume, the expense of operating the lab will be divided over a larger number of units, meaning lower costs on a per-unit basis. In addition, the merger will result in efficiency and cost savings in administrative functions, such as information systems, finance, human resources and marketing.
“This merger will position CBSI to continue its strong record of service to the community long into the future,” said Kovar. “By becoming part of a larger, regional Blood Center that serves dozens of communities throughout our region, CBSI will be positioned to better respond to temporary fluctuations in the blood supply, particularly when caused by weather, and to increase efficiency of blood component production.”
While the merger will impact legal, regulatory and administrative aspects of the blood center’s operations, few changes will be noticeable to the public, said MVRBC CEO Dave Green. “Community Blood Services of Illinois has a well-deserved reputation for service excellence within the health care community and among blood donors in east-central Illinois,” said Green. “We’re pleased to have this opportunity to work together with CBSI and extend its outstanding reputation for the safe, reliable and cost-effective delivery of blood products and services.”
About Mississippi Valley Regional Blood Center
A not-for-profit 501(c)(3) organization based in Davenport, Iowa, MVRBC is the exclusive provider of blood products and services to 75 hospitals in Illinois, Iowa, Missouri and Wisconsin. The Blood Center’s testing, processing and primary distribution center handles more than 240,000 units of blood components (derived from more than 160,000 volunteer donations) each year. (Multiple products are produced from each donation.)
MVRBC has provided life-saving blood products and services to hospitals in the Quad Cities, Springfield and beyond for nearly 40 years. Since its founding in 1974, MVRBC has collected more than 2.5-million units of blood from volunteer donors and has served millions of patients in the Midwest and through national resource sharing programs. For more information, see www.bloodcenter.org.
About Community Blood Services of Illinois
Community Blood Services of Illinois was established in 1972 as an Illinois not-for-profit corporation to assure area patients of the availability of adequate blood supplies derived solely from donations made by altruistic, volunteer donors. In the decades since its formation, primary activities of the blood center have continued to be the collection, preparation, testing and distribution of donated blood products for transfusion to patients. Community Blood Services of Illinois presently supplies all voluntarily donated blood used by patients at the community hospitals in Champaign-Urbana, Charleston-Mattoon, Danville and Effingham, Illinois. For more information, see www.bloodservices.org.
The announced intention to merge will need to pass through several levels of regulatory approval that typically require a few months to complete. The new, combined Community Board of Directors will complete the legal aspects of the merger by August 1, 2011 and the Blood Center is expected to conclude the regulatory processes in November 2011.