Sorry. Blood. We need blood. I guess all the Halloween stuff in the stores has me thinking of vampire bats and guys in capes with fangs and bad accents.
Our blood supplies hit rock bottom yesterday; I think we were down to four units of O blood, and had only 19 donations in the past three workdays. We need on average 50 units a day. Because the shortage is national and regional, there haven’t been stocks available elsewhere to bolster our supplies. Our standing external orders for blood haven’t been able to be filled since early September. It wasn’t looking good.
So, what’s one to do when lives are in the balance, when kids are bleeding and important surgeries are scheduled? You put out a special call to the remarkable people at UTMB, and as usual, they respond. The Blood Bank staff collected 38 units in the donor room today and another 16 in a mobile drive. Combined with some hustling by Blood Bank staff, we ended the day today with 16 O positive and 81 O negative units. I never cease to be humbled by the compassion, concern and sharing that members of our campus community show when the going gets tough. You are remarkable.
Hopefully more of us will show up tomorrow, and the next day, and the next. The crisis is expected to last a few more weeks nationally, and our stocks remain critically low. Remember, 50 units a day for UTMB and Shriners. Will you roll up your sleeves?