Through philanthropy and grant making, the Foundation’s mission is to support Blood Systems, Inc. (BSI) and, specifically, the Institute for Transfusion Medicine (ITxM) in fulfilling their mission to advance cutting-edge research and provide a safe and ample blood supply that meets the needs of the healthcare communities, patients, and donors in our service areas.
Blood Science Foundation was incorporated as a tax-exempt 501(c)(3) organization in 1987. It served as a subsidiary of The Institute for Transfusion Medicine (ITxM) to invest excess funds. ITxM was the parent company of Central Blood Bank and Lifesource. From 2008 – 2016, the Foundation granted contributions to tax-exempt organizations totaling approximately $25 million. In 2017, the Blood Science Foundation became an independent supporting charity and Foundation following the merger of ITxM with Blood Systems, Inc. in response to industry dynamics.
Blood Systems, Inc. was renamed Vitalant in 2018.
As one of the nation’s oldest and largest nonprofit community blood service providers, Vitalant collects approximately 1.8 million blood donations annually which are distributed to nearly 1,000 hospitals and health care partners for patients in need across 40 states.
Vitalant is a founding member of AABB (a professional organization that provides standards of development and accreditation for blood centers) and was a driving force in the creation of America’s Blood Centers (a consortium of independent community blood centers throughout the U.S. and Canada, including Vitalant). Both organizations play a major role in communication advances in transfusion medicine nationwide.
Blood Science Foundation is a 501(c)(3) tax exempt organization and is a public charity under Section 509(a)(3). Donors can deduct contributions they make under Internal Revenue Code Section 170. Contributions are tax deductible to the extent permitted by law.
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Vitalant operations in Pittsburgh is a tax-exempt organization established to serve the transfusion needs of Pittsburgh hospitals. The blood bank’s service areas include metropolitan Pittsburgh as well as more than 10 counties in western Pennsylvania, northern West Virginia and eastern Ohio. It currently distributes 145,000 units of whole blood annually to about 45 hospitals and healthcare facilities in the tri-state area.
Vitalant operations in Illinois is a tax-exempt provider of blood products serving Chicago area hospitals. The blood bank has 17 donor centers throughout the area and operates an average of 10 mobile drives every day, distributing approximately 107,000 units of blood annually.
Patient Care Operations
Clinical Services focuses on the pre-transfusion testing and delivery of vital blood products to patients in our Pennsylvania and Illinois service regions. In addition, Clinical Services contributes to the treatment requirements of stem cell transplant patients who are waiting for lifesaving hematological transplants worldwide. Clinical Services includes centralized transfusion services, an immunohematology reference lab, public cord blood banking, and total blood management services.
Diagnostics consists of a Coagulation Laboratory, a Therapeutic Hemapheresis department and a Hemostasis & Thrombosis Clinic. Its primary function is to provide diagnostic, consultative and educational support for referral tests in the areas of hemostasis and thrombosis.
The Hemophilia Center of Western Pennsylvania (HCWP) is a nonprofit providing holistic medical care for patients with hemophilia and other bleeding and clotting disorders throughout western Pennsylvania. Its comprehensive care model includes physical therapy and genetic counseling, with adult and pediatric providers. HCWP provides educational, insurance and research needs in partnership with entities such as the National Hemophilia Foundation, Patient Services Inc., The Foundation for Women & Girls, and the University of Pittsburgh’s Vascular Medicine Institute.
Board of Directors and Investment Committee Members
President & Chief Financial Officer
The independent Foundation is led by Mark Giaquinto, President, Chief Financial Officer, and Treasurer. Mr. Giaquinto has served as Secretary/Treasurer of the Blood Science Foundation from 2009 – 2017. He also served as Chief Financial Officer and Secretary/Treasurer of ITxM and all of its subsidiaries from 2009 – 2017.
Mr. Giaquinto has been a member of the Ronald McDonald House Board of Directors in Pittsburgh for 9 years, serving as President for 3 years. Previously, he served as Chief Financial Officer of the Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh and its Foundation. Mr. Giaquinto has obtained his B.S. in Business Administration/Accounting from Duquesne University.
Director of Operations
Ms. Brandt has held the roles of Director of Operations and Secretary (officer) for the Blood Science Foundation since 2017. She served as the Executive Assistant to Mark Giaquinto, ITxM’s CFO, from 2009-2017. During that time, Ms. Brandt coordinated all board meeting related activities for both ITxM and the Blood Science Foundation.
Ms. Brandt has been active for many years with local Pittsburgh non-profit organizations such as Rotary, the Ronald McDonald House and various food banks. In 2017, she served on a mission trip to Comayagua, Honduras, visiting All God’s Children Orphanage (Hogar de Ninos Nazareth). Ms. Brandt has obtained her dual BA degrees (German and International Studies) from Millersville University.
Foundation Marketing Director
Ms. Blanchard joined the Blood Science Foundation as Foundation Marketing Coordinator in early 2018. She came aboard with a diverse range of experience including coordination, administration, customer service and retail.
Ms. Blanchard has a lifelong dream of working to help and support others in need. Her charitable interests include animal rights and conservation, environmental protection and conservation, women’s rights and programs in developing nations. Ms. Blanchard received her B.S. degree in Graphic & Communications Design from La Roche College.