BloodWatch.org is a not-for-profit organization advocating for a safe, voluntary, public blood system in Canada. We are committed to upholding Justice Horace Krever’s landmark inquiry and his recommendations.
We are actively advocating for each province in Canada and for the Federal Government to pass a version of The Voluntary Blood Donations Act, which was passed in Ontario in a unanimous vote in 2014. The legislation protects the public blood system and bans the private sale of blood and plasma; in doing so, the new law upholds Justice Krever’s recommendations and protects the integrity of Canada’s voluntary blood system.
Passing this legislation is a legacy every government can be proud of.
We support Canadian Blood Services (CBS) as our only national blood operator and encourage every Canadian to donate only to CBS.
BloodWatch.org is committed to:
- Advocating for a safe, public, voluntary blood system
- Supporting the Krever Inquiry and its findings
- Providing education on our blood system, the tainted blood crisis and The Krever Inquiry
- Advocate for the non-commercialization of human tissue
- Creating a memoriam for all of those impacted by the tainted blood tragedy
Our BloodWatch Team
Our organization is made up of tainted blood survivors, safe blood advocates and citizens. We are extremely fortunate to have a wide range of support from the public and countless organizations across the country. See our Who Is Against Paid Plasma page for more info. Join our growing chorus – together we can make Canada a better place.
Executive Director and CoFounder – Kat Lanteigne
Ms. Lanteigne is a Toronto based writer, actor and safe blood advocate. Her play, Tainted, which tells the story of how the tainted blood crisis impacted Canadian families, premiered in 2013. Kat was the lead advocate who successfully petitioned the Ontario Government to ban private paid plasma clinics from opening and subsequently toured her play to support the legislation. In December of 2014 The Voluntary Blood Donations Act was passed in a unanimous vote in Ontario. The tainted blood crisis and the Krever Inquiry have been at the center of her life’s work as an artist; she is proud to be the Cofounder of BloodWatch.org as a continuation of this work. Kat is on an ongoing cross-country tour to stop private plasma clinics from gaining a foothold in order to safeguard the integrity of Canada’s blood system.
CoFounder and Chair – Michael McCarthy
Mr. McCarthy, as the Vice-President of the Canadian Hemophilia Society, was the national spokesperson for Canadians infected by blood tainted with Hepatitis C. His tireless efforts resulted in a landmark $2.4 billion settlement with the federal government on behalf of the victims of tainted blood. He has over 15 years of experience with the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long Term Care and over 25 years in health policy. In 2001, he was appointed Senior Policy Advisor to the Ontario Minister of Health. He was awarded the Queen’s Golden Jubilee Award presented by the Governor General of Canada for his incredible advocacy efforts relating to tainted blood. He is proud to be a Cofounder of BloodWatch.org and a tainted blood survivor.
CoFounder and Treasurer – Andrew Cumming
Mr. Cumming has run derivatives trading businesses at three global banks and has also run a hedge fund. He has served on several corporate and philanthropic boards. He and his wife Hillary started the Bott-Harrington Fellowships in bleeding disorder nursing at St. Michael’s Hospital as well as the Plater-Kreppner Health Law Internships at Osgoode Law School. Mr. Cumming is an HIV and HCV infected hemophiliac, and a survivor of cancer and a liver transplant. Mr. Cumming testified in support of the Voluntary Blood Donations Act and is proud to be a Cofounder of BloodWatch.org.
Board Member – David Harvey
Mr. Harvey was key counsel during the Krever Inquiry. His experience representing families, organizations and patient groups who were impacted by tainted blood is vast. He has argued blood related cases in the Supreme Court of Canada, Federal Court, Federal Court of Appeal and the Ontario Superior Court. Mr. Harvey represented patient groups during the Krever Inquiry. BloodWatch.org is the platform for the continuation of his work. His knowledge on the blood file and the Canadian blood system are unparalleled.
Board Member – Victoria Kinniburgh
Ms. Kinniburgh works in the field of Human Resources. She is the mother of two young boys with Severe Hemophilia A and is actively involved in the Hemophilia Community. She advocated for the continuation of a safe, secure, voluntary blood donation system in Ontario. Ms. Kinniburgh testified at Queen’s Park in support of the Voluntary Blood Donations Act and represented multiple families who also supported the bill. She is proud to be a part of the BloodWatch.org team.
Board Member – Dr. Alexandra Mihailovic
Dr. Mihailovic is a Trauma Surgeon & Critical Care Physician in Victoria, BC. She has worked in South Africa, Uganda, Rwanda and after the earthquake in Haiti with the Red Cross. Her research has included addressing issues of Access to Emergency Trauma Care in low income settings as well as the impact of war and displacement on health. She has been keynote speaker focused on Health and Human Rights and has addressed the UN General Assembly as an advisor on Health and Displacement. Protecting the right of Canadians to safe, universal access to health care is her current interest. This passion has brought her onto team BloodWatch.org.
Our Canadian Story
The Krever Inquiry exposed the systemic failures of the Red Cross, Health Canada, and the Federal and Provincial Governments to protect Canadians and the blood supply from tainted blood and blood products. The results were calamitous and the tainted blood crisis is our country’s largest and most tragic health crisis.
The Krever Inquiry has become the pinnacle health document on how to manage a safe blood system and we are guided by these principles. We believe that blood is a public resource, that donors should not be paid, and that Canada must take measures to increase self-sufficiency in all blood and blood products.
The tainted blood crisis impacted over 30,000 Canadians when they were infected with HIV and hepatitis C due to contaminated blood and blood products. It is estimated that over 8,000 Canadians will die as a direct result of this preventable tragedy.
We are firmly committed to keeping Canadian blood as a public resource and believe blood and plasma should not be commoditized.
If you are interested in becoming a part of BloodWatch.org please send us an email and make sure to sign up to our newsletter for future announcements.
There is a lot more to come….