Army

January 10, 2014

DoD: Military blood program director urges generosity

Jim Garamone
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON — The director of the Armed Services Blood Program wants all service members to be part of a new arms race.

Col. Richard McBride wants service members to roll up their sleeves and donate blood to help fellow service members and their Families.

Historically, blood levels shrink around the holidays, and since 1970, January has been declared National Blood Donor Month.

“January, just like the summer months, is a time when there is a decrease in the blood supply, primarily because people are preoccupied with the holidays,” said McBride. “This is a great time to encourage donors and keep them aware that we need donations 12 months a year, not just in the summer.”

The Armed Services Blood Program is dedicated to ensuring that service members who need blood can get it, McBride said. The fighting overseas has consumed a lot of blood resources, and one injured service member may need 40 units of blood in order to get back home.

“It’s a sacred mission that we hold in our hearts,” McBride said.

The program’s staff wants to ensure that every wounded warrior that can make it home does come home.

“It’s a sacred mission that we hold in our hearts,” McBride said. “We never want to hear that they didn’t come home because they didn’t have enough blood.”

The program also provides blood products for stateside service members and Family members.

“Right now we collect about 10,000 units per month — about 120,000 a year,” McBride said. “In peacetime, it can go as low as 90,000 [units] per year, but at the height of Operation Iraqi Freedom we were collecting about 150,000 to 160,000 a year.”

One blood donation can result in four products. Red blood cells are what give blood its color and what a person needs if he or she is in danger of bleeding to death.

Blood plasma is the straw-colored liquid that has clotting factors used to prevent bleeding. Platelets and cryoprecipitate also are used to accelerate clotting.

Doctors also use whole blood and there have been times during the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan where doctors had to transfuse whole blood to wounded warriors.

In times of crises, doctors sometimes must turn to “the walking blood bank.” This is an emergency whole-blood collection from service members.

“It’s definitely not planned, but we train for it,” McBride said. “In those cases, we ask everyone to roll up their sleeves and donate at a moment’s notice. Our troops donate, and those deployed have no problem rolling up their sleeves if they are available to save another warrior’s life.”

The blood program follows all Food and Drug Administration rules, even in a war zone, McBride said.

The Armed Services Blood Program has 21 blood centers in the United States and overseas. Blood donors must be 18 or older, in good health and free of any blood-borne infectious diseases, McBride said. The armed services program accepts donations from service members, family members, Department of Defense civilians, contractors and veterans.

The typical donation takes about 45 minutes and could save the lives of several military brothers or sisters thousands of miles away, he said.

“You can help bring them back to their Families,” McBride said.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
Maranda Flynn

Sergeant Major of the Army talks Fort Huachuca’s leadership, success in Army’s future

Maranda Flynn Sgt. Maj. of the Army Raymond Chandler III speaks to Fort Huachuca, Ariz. Soldiers about battle buddy safety during a town hall meeting held at Cochise Theater, Aug. 20. As force reduction kicks into gear, Soldier...
 
 
Lisa Ferdinando

Army focuses on good energy stewardship to protect mission

Lisa Ferdinando Katherine Hammack, assistant secretary of the Army for Installations, Energy and Environment, speaks at a panel discussion in Washington, D.C., April 10, 2013. WASHINGTON — The Army is focused on being a good ...
 
 

Under Secretary challenges Army senior leaders to revamp Civilian career management

ARLINGTON, Va. — During a two-day session at the Pentagon last month, approximately 30 members of the Senior Executive Service, or SES, gathered to discuss how to improve Civilian career development. Army Under Secretary Brad Carson hosted the event, which was meant to help shape policy changes regarding how the Army hires, trains, develops and...
 

 
Courtesy Photo

Military Intelligence – Moment in MI history

Document specialist uncovers Nazi archives August 1945 U.S. Army photos Former Nazi leaders faced an International Military Tribunal in Nuremburg, Germany, on Nov. 20, 1945. Defendants Herman Wilhelm Goering, at far end of fron...
 
 
Melissa Buckley

Soldier Show comes to Sierra Vista next week

Melissa Buckley Members of the U.S. Army Soldier Show perform at Abram’s Theater, Fort Leonard Wood, MO, July 31. The 2014 production of the Soldier Show hits town next week. The public is invited to attend this live show at ...
 
 

Antiterrorism Awareness Month: Army community must stay alert

WASHINGTON — A suspicious package arrives in the mail. An employee is acting erratically. A group is seen surveying an Army installation. A social media contact you’ve never met has taken a keen interest in your unit’s movements. The Army community needs to be aware of their surroundings and report anything that seems out of...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin