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Eastern NC Town Resolves to Save More Lives in 2020

Eastern NC Town Resolves to Save More Lives in 2020

JACKSONVILLE, N.C. – Onslow County Emergency Medical Services (OCEMS) is now partnering with the community non-profit blood center, The Blood Connection (TBC), to treat patients by introducing type O positive whole blood units into life-saving medical responses. OCEMS will be one of the first EMS units in the nation to utilize whole blood to treat major blood loss on the way to the hospital.

This program will ensure that lifesaving blood transfusions can begin before a patient arrives to their designated hospital – which can be the difference between life or death in a trauma response. Every year, over 60,000 people in the U.S. die due to the aftermath of hemorrhagic trauma. Research has shown that incorporating whole blood units into a first response before a patient’s arrival to the hospital can increase their chances of survival by about 70%.

“Having a dedicated EMS unit, like OCEMS, willing to incorporate our whole blood products into their day to day response is not only a huge step for TBC, but the communities in which we serve and live,” said Delisa K. English, President and CEO of TBC. “We are very excited to be a part of OCEMS’ program and are looking forward to meeting our first patients impacted by this program in Jacksonville.

The idea of using whole blood on the scene of a trauma dates back to World War I and II during combat. Since 1970, the standard practice has shifted to dividing and storing whole blood into plasma, platelets and red blood cells – known as component therapy – in order to conserve blood donations. Fast forward to today and evidence-based research is now showing that whole blood transfusions are effective and do improve mortality rates in on the scene trauma response.

OCEMS was motivated to start this initiative based on a similar program out of San Antonio, which was the first major city in the nation to start utilizing whole blood units on EMS vehicles. 

The program, which will start mid-December, will be supported by blood donations from TBC donors. TBC is a local, non-profit community blood center dedicated to supplying area hospitals in the Carolinas and parts of Georgia with a variety of blood products. Currently, blood products collected from TBC community donors help supply 28 hospitals across the Triangle and Eastern NC.

A press conference will be held on December 16 at the Onslow County Public Safety Memorial in Jacksonville, NC at 10 a.m. OCEMS and TBC members will speak on behalf of the partnership and answer questions. 

Local Blood Provider Now Serving Florence-Based Hospital System

Local Blood Provider Now Serving Florence-Based Hospital System

FLORENCE, S.C. – The Blood Connection (TBC), a Greenville, SC based community blood center, became the exclusive blood provider for another hospital system on October 1, 2019. McLeod Health will be joining other healthcare systems like Vidant Health, WakeMed, UNC REX Healthcare, Roper St. Francis Healthcare, Mission Health, and Prisma Health, who have chosen TBC as their local blood supplier. McLeod, a not-for-profit hospital system based in Florence, SC, has signed on to multiple years with TBC and consists of eight medical facilities that serve 18 counties in the Carolinas. This new relationship will impact thousands of residents by providing live-saving blood products to the PeeDee region through the support of those communities.

TBC has been a non-profit 501(c)(3) community blood center for almost 60 years and is the exclusive provider for the entire Upstate of South Carolina and a large portion of North Carolina. With its expansion into Florence, SC, the blood center will be bridging the gap in the northeastern part of the state between its two other service areas, Greenville and Charleston. 

“This Florence hospital system invited us to the region to be their local blood provider. We are committed to keeping this community supplied with life-saving blood products. To put it into perspective, an unexpected trauma can require 20 pints of blood or more. If there happens to be multiple traumas that require blood, the community supply could be suddenly reduced,” said Delisa K. English, TBC President and CEO. “We have to be ready. When you donate blood with The Blood Connection, you are ensuring your community will have the blood products needed to save lives every day.”

While blood collections is a big part of what TBC does, it is also a full-service blood center, which includes testing, manufacturing, distribution and reference lab services. TBC has begun hiring for blood mobiles already deployed to the region with plans to open a donation center in Florence in 2020. As a single-focused operation, the community blood center is able to commit all of its resources to collecting and testing blood products in order to transport them to local hospitals quickly.

In the last year, TBC has become the blood center of choice for 20 additional counties, providing more than 220,000 blood products to hospital partners in the Carolinas. That translates to hundreds of thousands of local people impacted by the single act of a neighbor donating blood. TBC has also doubled its mobile units to 42 and will be using them to increase its donor collection opportunities to include the southeastern part of North Carolina, more areas along the Outer Banks, and the Pee Dee region of South Carolina. Because TBC’s mission is to keep blood donations local, more communities will now have the opportunity to support its neighbors in a unique way by sharing life.

Two Independent Hospitals in Eastern North Carolina Choose New Blood Provider

Two Independent Hospitals in Eastern North Carolina Choose New Blood Provider

RALEIGH, N.C – The Blood Connection (TBC), based in Greenville, SC, is now the exclusive blood provider for Onslow Memorial Hospital in Jacksonville, NC and Martin General in Williamston, NC. On June 1, 2019, TBC began serving both hospitals, expanding its reach in Onslow County and breaching into new territory in Martin County.

TBC is a non-profit 501(c)(3) community blood center, licensed and regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. TBC has served the Upstate of South Carolina for decades and is now the exclusive provider for every Upstate hospital and a large portion of North Carolina. TBC has a long-standing relationship with the Eastern North Carolina medical community through its affiliation with more than 20 hospitals in 26 counties. TBC also has a strong partnership with Vidant EastCare, which provides the critical blood supply needed to support trauma patients with on-board, O-negative units and plasma on its helicopters.

“We are honored to be able to support this community and we are grateful for each new opportunity to connect donors with recipients,” said Delisa K. English, TBC President and CEO. “We want residents to join us by donating blood that will serve friends, family and neighbors. When you give blood with The Blood Connection you are ensuring that the people of this community will have the blood products available to save their lives.” 

TBC thanks Onslow Memorial and Martin General for the opportunity to serve their patients. Both hospitals embody the community-centered mentality and dedication to quality healthcare that TBC also exemplifies. Now with two more hospitals to supply, TBC will be expanding its donor collection opportunities in the Eastern North Carolina community.

 “We’re looking forward to working with blood donors in this region,” English said. “This is an opportunity to serve more people, help more patients and save more lives. We’re hiring employees and recruiting donors from the local community. Please watch for our signature red blood mobile units and listen for a call from our donor recruiters.” 

Every two seconds, someone in the US needs a life-saving blood transfusion and volunteer donors are the only source of blood products. Maintaining an adequate blood supply requires a delicate balancing effort that monitors available supply versus expected demand. TBC’s mission is to ensure all hospital partners have the blood supplies needed for patients at any given time. All of the blood received through donations goes right back into the communities that TBC serves. In locally-driven operations, neighbors are helping neighbors, but only through a strong partnership with the community.  

TBC urges all eligible donors to donate to ensure that hospital’s needs for blood are uninterrupted. Although TBC is specifically requesting O-negative blood donations, all blood types are needed.

Donors can visit thebloodconnection.org to find a blood drive. They can also give at the local TBC donation center: 5925 Glenwood Avenue, Raleigh, NC. TBC welcomes businesses and organizations that can host a blood drive.  To sponsor a blood drive, call 984-222-1100.

Vidant Health’s Partnership with TBC

Vidant Health’s Partnership with TBC

Vidant Health Partners with TBC

GREENVILLE, N.C. – The Blood Connection is now the blood provider for Vidant Health in Pitt County.

“We are honored to be able to support the health of people in this region, and we are grateful for each new opportunity to connect donors with recipients,” said Delisa K. English, TBC President and CEO. “We want eastern North Carolina to join us by donating blood that will serve friends, family, and neighbors. For the victim of a car crash to the cancer patient who depends on platelets, the need for volunteer blood donations is great. When you give blood to The Blood Connection, you are ensuring that the people of this community will have the blood products available to save their lives.”

TBC urges all eligible donors to donate, to help ensure that hospital needs for blood are uninterrupted. Although TBC is specifically requesting O-negative blood donations, all blood types are needed.

Brian Floyd, Vidant Health’s COO said, “I’m excited to share that The Blood Connection is now the primary supplier of blood and blood products for Vidant Health. Ultimately, Vidant’s objective is to have a self-sustaining supply of blood and The Blood Connection is committed with us to achieve this goal.

“Vidant is always focused and committed to quality, and The Blood Connection’s high standards in quality and service, were key factors in forming this new partnership. The Blood Connection is accredited by the American Association of Blood Banks, the premier accreditation service for organizations involved in blood supplies, and is licensed and regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Blood is collected through bloodmobiles, portable field units and fixed donation sites; all testing and processing takes place at a state-of-the-art biologics process center in Piedmont, SC. The Blood Connection’s laboratory services also help us meet the precise needs of patients.

“We are excited and supportive of The Blood Connection coming to eastern North Carolina and we look forward to working together for patients throughout the region.”