Back to Top Skip to main content

New equipment at Camp Lemonnier improves blood storage

Hospital Corpsmen 2nd Class Andrew Kays (right) and Christi Greenwood (left), deployed with the Expeditionary Medical Facility at Camp Lemonnier, receive training on the Automated Cell Processor 215 while Hospital Corpsman 2nd Class Joshua Paddlety from Naval Hospital Sigonella, Italy, as part of implementation of the Frozen Blood Program here, March 13, 2019. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Joe Rullo) Navy Hospital Corpsmen 2nd Class Andrew Kays (right) and Christi Greenwood (left), deployed with the Expeditionary Medical Facility at Camp Lemonnier, receive training on the Automated Cell Processor 215 while Navy Hospital Corpsman 2nd Class Joshua Paddlety from Naval Hospital Sigonella, Italy, as part of implementation of the Frozen Blood Program here, March 13, 2019. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Joe Rullo)

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness | Armed Services Blood Program | Military Hospitals and Clinics

CAMP LEMONNIER, Djibouti — Many people have donated blood at one time or another to support their local community in a time of need. Service members see that same need during a mass casualty situation that may occur in a forward-deployed area.

Getting people to donate is only the first step in keeping a sufficient supply of blood on hand in case of an emergency. Storing donated blood poses its own unique challenges for medical treatment facilities in austere environments. The Expeditionary Medical Facility (EMF) at Camp Lemonnier, Djibouti, is one of those facilities; until now.

EMF received new equipment March 15, 2019 as part of the Frozen Blood Program that will allow for the longer storage of red blood cells, significantly increasing the shelf life of blood on the base.

The new equipment, called Automated Cell Processor 215 (ACP 215), provides a safe way to freeze, thaw and wash red blood cells. Red cells are glycerolized, deglycerolized and washed in a closed disposable system and automatically re-suspended in additive solution to permit extended product storage post washing, according to Haemonetics Inc., the company that manufactures the equipment.

Blood that is collected and currently stored in medical refrigerators at EMF expires three to four weeks after collection. Frozen blood, which is stored at negative 70-degrees Celsius, can be used for up to 10 years.

The Officer in Charge of EMF at Camp Lemonnier, Navy Cmdr. Edward H. Owens, said the technology will significantly enhance EMF's mission capability as the sole U.S. Role-2-Plus medical facility on the African continent.

“I think we all know and appreciate the benefits blood products bring to the overall survival of patients in need,” Owens said. “But we may not fully understand the logistical challenges that exist in shipping liquid blood, as well as the amount of effort that goes into maintaining a Walking Blood Program. Having this technology will lesson those logistical challenges and reduce our required levels of liquid blood.”

As a Role-2-Plus facility, EMF is able to perform routine hematology, chemistry and urinalysis as well as a battery of point-of-care tests for infection and tropical diseases such as Malaria and Dengue fever.

The Walking Blood Program is used military-wide to identify and screen qualified blood donors to provide fresh whole blood for wounded service members.

Navy Hospital Corpsman 2nd Class Christi Greenwood, an EMF lab technician, said the medical facility at Camp Lemonnier receives its frozen blood units from the Armed Services Blood Bank Center, Europe, since locally there isn’t a way to freeze collected units.

“Donated blood is separated into the component red blood cells and plasma,” Greenwood said.” The red blood cells are then mixed with glycerol and frozen prior to shipment.”

The ACP 215 is used to reconstitute the red blood cell. It takes approximately two hours to thaw and process the blood so it is ready for use.

Prior to the equipment arriving, EMF was not able to reconstitute frozen blood; therefore, fresh blood was the only option available.

EMF lab technician Navy Hospital Corpsman 2nd Class Andrew Kays said while the new Frozen Blood Program doesn’t replace the need for chilled blood entirely, it offers the ability to store hundreds of units locally.

“We are able to provide a more reliable blood source for emergencies, drastically reducing the waste of blood products,” said Kays. “We are very excited to help bring this capability to our patients.”

Kays said a Clinical Laboratory Improvement Program (CLIP) certification was performed prior to going live with the new program. This certification is similar to civilian programs that maintain and monitor quality standards for hospitals and independent laboratories.

“Attainment of CLIP certification is a major milestone for EMF as we strive to provide world-class care to Camp Lemonnier and its tenant commands,” Kays said.

Owens said being able to provide the kind of care this new equipment covers will significantly enhance EMF’s mission.

“Having this capability will enable us to partner with Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa Surgeon Cell to support warfighters down range," Owens said.

Camp Lemonnier is an operationally-focused shore installation that enables U.S., allied and partner nation forces to be where and when they are needed to ensure security and stability in Europe, Africa and Southwest Asia.

The mission of Camp Lemonnier is to enable joint warfighters operating forward and to reinforce the relationship between the United States and Djibouti by conducting five key shore missions – air operations, port operations, security, safety and quality of life – and providing core mission enablers such as fuel, water and power for tenant commands, transient U.S. assets and individual service members.

Disclaimer: Re-published content may have been edited for length and clarity.  Read original post.

You also may be interested in...

Defending the Homeland: WRNMMC on front line of COVID-19 war

Article
4/29/2020
Image of soldiers and businessman in suit walking through an emergency shelter lined with beds and medical equipment

For patient and staff safety, WRNMMC started restricted access control points March 12.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | Military Hospitals and Clinics

MSMR Vol. 27 No. 4 - April 2020

Report
4/22/2020

A monthly publication of the Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch. This issue of the peer-reviewed journal contains the following articles: Commentary: The Warrior Heat- and Exertion-Related Event Collaborative and the Fort Benning Heat Center; Update: Heat illness, active component, U.S. Armed Forces, 2019; Update: Exertional rhabdomyolysis, active component, U.S. Armed Forces, 2015–2019; Update: Exertional hyponatremia, active component, U.S. Armed Forces, 2004–2019

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness | Public Health

FDA withdrawal of Zantac affects military health beneficiaries

Article
4/15/2020
Image of pharmacist counting out medication

Common heartburn drug pulled off shelves amid concerns

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness

Military medical training continues during COVID-19

Article
4/14/2020
Students and instructors in the METC Respiratory Therapist program practice safe distancing and wear face coverings while training with mechanical ventilators. (Photo by Oscar Lopez)

METC’s mission - to train the world's finest medics, corpsmen and technicians - is vital to force readiness and the nation.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | Health Readiness

MSMR Vol. 27 No. 4 - APR 2020

Report
4/2/2020

As of 1 APR, 186,101 total confirmed COVID-19 cases (3,603 deaths) have been reported in all U.S. states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Current hot spots include NY, NJ, LA, CA, GA, FL, SC, and Guam. Confirmed COVID-19 cases are rapidly accelerating in the U.S., an increase expected due to amplified testing capacity and ongoing community spread. As of 1 APR, CDC is reporting widespread transmission of COVID-19 in 25 (+12) U.S. states and Guam.

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness | Public Health

MSMR Vol. 27 No. 3 - March 2020

Report
3/30/2020

A monthly publication of the Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch. This issue of the peer-reviewed journal contains the following articles: Update: Sexually transmitted infections, active component, U.S. Armed Forces, 2011–2019; Incidence of sexually transmitted infections before and after insertion of an intrauterine device or contraceptive implant, active component service women, U.S. Armed Forces, 2014–2019; Blood lead level surveillance among pediatric beneficiaries in the Military Health System, 2010–2017

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness | Public Health

TCCC prepares Airmen for domestic response

Article
3/9/2020
PATRIOT South 2020 participants complete two-day Tactical Combat Casualty Care training course during PATRIOT South 20 at Gulfport Combat Readiness Training Center. PATRIOT South 20 is an annual, accredited Joint National Training Capability exercise that provides a simulated natural disaster environment for units to test their response and capabilities to conduct domestic operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Wendy Kuhn)

TCCC is not only applicable in combat casualty care, but also in mass casualty, disaster response or terrorist situations as well

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness

METC combat medic training unveils new EMT sim labs

Article
3/3/2020
A team of combat medic trainees attend to a "patient" in the EMT warehouse lab.  Students engage in various scenarios in the newly designed EMT simulation labs that resemble real environments that expose students to lifelike patient encounters. (U.S. Army photo by Lisa Braun)

The sim labs have really come a long way

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness

Armed Services Blood Program Fact Sheet

Fact Sheet
2/26/2020

This fact sheet describes the Armed Services Blood Program, and provides locations of where you can donate blood for the military.

Recommended Content:

Armed Services Blood Program

Armed Services Blood Program Donation Education Fact Sheet

Fact Sheet
2/26/2020

This fact sheet describes some facts and important information about blood donation

Recommended Content:

Armed Services Blood Program

Educational Factsheet about Blood

Infographic
2/26/2020
This infographic provides educational information about donating blood.

This infographic provides educational information about donating blood.

Recommended Content:

Armed Services Blood Program

DHA Director discusses vision for future

Article
2/25/2020
Lt. Gen. Ronald Place, Director, Defense Health Agency, visits with the staff of the Stuttgart Army Health Clinic in Germany.  Since becoming DHA Director, Lt. Gen. Place has focused on creating great outcomes for the beneficiaries who rely on the Military Health System for their health care.

DHA is providing a more integrated system of readiness and health

Recommended Content:

MHS Transformation | Military Hospitals and Clinics

Department Of Defense Health Affairs Media Roundtable Announcement of NDAA 2017, Section 703(d) Report to Congress

Congressional Testimony
2/19/2020

Thomas McCaffery, Assistant Secretary Of Defense For Health Affairs; Dr. David Smith, Reform Leader For Health Care Management; and Lieutenant General Ronald Place, Director, Defense Health Agency, participated in a Health Affairs Media Roundtable following the announcement that the NDAA 2017, Section 703(d) Report was submitted to Congress.

Recommended Content:

Military Hospitals and Clinics | MHS Transformation

AF-H-633d MEDGRP-Langley – Joint Base Langley-Eustis (JBLE) Vol 1

Report
2/18/2020

The table below summarizes the findings and data informing the decision on the future of the Military Medical Treatment Facility (MTF).

Recommended Content:

MHS Transformation | Military Hospitals and Clinics

45th Medical Group Patrick Air Force Base (AFB) Vol 2

Report
2/18/2020

The table below summarizes the findings and data informing the decision on the future of the Military Medical Treatment Facility (MTF).

Recommended Content:

MHS Transformation | Military Hospitals and Clinics
<< < 1 2 3 4 5  ... > >> 
Showing results 1 - 15 Page 1 of 50

DHA Address: 7700 Arlington Boulevard | Suite 5101 | Falls Church, VA | 22042-5101

Some documents are presented in Portable Document Format (PDF). A PDF reader is required for viewing. Download a PDF Reader or learn more about PDFs.