Blood Assurance 'dangerously low' on donations due to Thursday's trauma cases
Chattanooga Blood Assurance crews say their blood supply is dangerously low because of multiple traumas on Thursday night.
However, it's not clear which trauma cases Blood Assurance is referring to. We were told they are not able to specify because of HIPAA laws. We reached out to Erlanger, which partners with Blood Assurance for their blood supply. They tell us they have had several mass transfusions recently.
“It's definitely taking a toll on us and that's one of the reasons we're in critical need right now,” said Blood Assurance Marketing Coordinator, Caitlyn Mantooth.
Mantooth says late Thursday night, they got a call from Erlanger saying they needed more blood immediately.
“Whenever we get a call like that we know that someone has really been injured. We do our best to get the units as fast as possible to the hospital that needs it to make sure that we can help them in saving that life,” she said. “We have people here all night waiting for calls do if there is a trauma they can immediately get units shipped over.”
Crews ended up providing 550 red cell units.
“It was double what we normally ship out and it was more than we collected yesterday,” said Mantooth. "We peeked at the red cell supply Friday. The supply is stored in a freezer and is sorted on several shelves, but those shelves were bare."
“The red cells are mainly what we use in the trauma,” Mantooth said. “Red blood cells only have a shelf life of 42 days and platelets only have a shelf life of five days so it’s critical that we keep donors coming in all of the time to make sure that we have all that we need.”
Mantooth says this is not the first time they have been in need of blood because of traumas this year. It's why they're calling on the community to help and to donate. For more information, click here.