Hoxworth Blood Center celebrates 85 years of saving lives close to home

Internationally recognized leader in transfusion medicine paves the way for innovative hemotherapy

As Hoxworth Blood Center, University of Cincinnati, marks its 85th anniversary on December 10, it's the perfect time to reflect on the institution's remarkable journey in revolutionizing transfusion medicine and saving lives close to home since 1938.

Founded by Paul Hoxworth, MD, a visionary native of Columbus, Ohio, the center's origins trace back to 1938, when Hoxworth, then assistant in surgery at Cincinnati's General Hospital, identified critical challenges in maintaining an adequate blood supply for medical treatments. Recognizing the inefficiency and delays associated with relying on friends and relatives as donors, Hoxworth embarked on a mission to transform the landscape of blood donation in Greater Cincinnati.

Old  Mobile Bloodmobile

A significant milestone was achieved in December 1938, with the opening of Cincinnati’s first community blood bank — the ARC Transfusion Center at Cincinnati General Hospital. Dr. Hoxworth served as the inaugural director with his wife, Nancy, who worked alongside him as a secretary. The center operated 24/7 and maintained a list of donors available for immediate contact, accumulating around 3,400 donations in 1939.

In 1944, the blood center became a part of the University of Cincinnati, evolving into the UC Blood Transfusion Service. In 1973, in honor of its pioneering founder, the transfusion service was renamed the Paul I. Hoxworth Blood Center and is now widely known as Hoxworth Blood Center, University of Cincinnati. The center is the oldest operating blood bank in the nation and the only community blood bank in the United States partnered with the university, sharing a tri-part mission of community, research, and education.

Hoxworth’s vision of emphasizing the importance of blood donation remains as steadfast today as it did 85 years ago. Hoxworth now has a team of nearly 300 dedicated employees and collects more than 100,000 units of blood annually to serve more than 30 hospitals across Ohio, Kentucky, and Indiana. In addition to being the sole provider of blood products in the greater Cincinnati area, Hoxworth also supports all solid organ and bone marrow transplant programs in the region.

Hoxworth operates seven Neighborhood Donor Centers, and hundreds of mobile blood drives to continue its ongoing mission of ensuring a safe and stable blood supply and to provide innovative cellular therapies for the Greater Cincinnati community.

To contribute to Hoxworth’s lifesaving mission, visit the Hoxworth Blood Center website for additional information.

Join us in celebrating 85 years of Saving Lives Close to Home.

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