Back to Top Skip to main content Skip to sub-navigation

Coming together during a pandemic to provide life-giving blood.

Service member gives blood while wearing a mask. Captain Aaron Hew Len, assigned to Task Force Oahu’s COVID-19’s response team, donates blood during the Armed Services Blood Program drive held April 24, 2020, at the 29th Infantry Brigade Combat Readiness Center in Kalaeloa, Hawaii. The blood donated by activated guardsmen will be used by service members on the front line and homefront, and by their civilian counterparts. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Master Sgt. Mysti Bicoy)

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | Armed Services Blood Program

As the nation continues to battle the spread of COVID-19, the Armed Services Blood Program has instituted new safety measures and programs to ensure the warfighter will receive the blood products they need. When people think of donating blood, they probably envision whole blood, explained Army Col. Audra L. Taylor, ASBP division chief. But blood donations are also broken down to blood components, including plasma, platelets, and red blood cells. These blood products — including whole blood — are sent to combatant commands around the world, as well as to military treatment facilities. Blood products do expire, which makes the need for blood donors ever constant, Taylor added.

Service members are taking action by giving blood to support their brothers and sisters in arms during this worldwide pandemic. Donors include Army Sgt. Samantha Delgado, who recently reached the one-gallon donor milestone at the Lackland Blood Donor Center in Texas. As a universal blood-type donor, Delgado knows that her blood can go to anyone and has given it readily over her five years in the Army. “I feel as though it’s a civil duty for me to give as it’s the only blood type that can go to everyone,” she said.

Delgado is among thousands of service members throughout the country who are rolling up their sleeves to save lives by donating blood. From coast to coast and around the world, military communities are coming together to support a fit and ready force by coordinating and supporting local blood drives hosted by the ASBP. The ASBP is the official blood program for the Department of Defense, tasked with ensuring the Military Health System has blood products wherever and whenever needed.

In response to COVID-19, the ASBP has implemented additional safety measures at blood drives and centers to ensure a safe donation environment following recommended guidelines by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, as well as the Food and Drug Administration. Newly implemented procedures include staff wearing appropriate personal protective equipment, taking of a donor’s temperature before entering the collection area, keeping groupings of staff and donors to 10 or less, increasing cleaning products on site, and cleaning of all reused items such as pens.

“There is no known or reported risk to a donor at this time to contract COVID-19 during the donation process,” said Taylor, adding anyone interested in donating blood or organizing a local blood drive can contact the ASBP.

Due to social distancing and stay-at-home orders throughout the country, the ASBP has seen numerous blood drives cancelled and a significant decrease in donor turnout. Thanks to military communities coming together, the blood program has been able to meet the current demand for blood abroad and within military treatment facilities. However, the situation can change rapidly and the need for donations is critical to support present and future readiness.

Marine Lance Cpl. Mark Cody, 3rd Battalion, 7th Marine Regiment in Twentynine Palms, California, decided to donate at his local ASBP blood drive because he heard giving blood will support service members on the front lines. “I am simply donating blood because it’s the right thing to do,” said Cody. “When you have the chance to help the forward deployed units, you just do it. We have to have each other’s back and giving blood is one way to show we care for one another.”

You also may be interested in...

Expert panel on infection control to tackle COVID-19 questions

Article
5/18/2020
Two men in hazmat suits

How are patient safety decisions made during the pandemic?

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus

Defending the Homeland: RWBAHC Soldier Shows compassion, initiative in COVID-19 Screening

Article
5/18/2020
Two soldiers standing in front of a car, holding a coin

"This type of behavior needs to be highlighted and awarded because it is truly what makes this organization great."

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus

Defending the Homeland: BAMC infectious disease doc aids Guam's COVID response

Article
5/14/2020
Image of soldier standing, surrounded by tropical water

The Navy has since undertaken an aggressive mitigation plan of isolating, quarantining, and treating affected Sailors to keep the ship prepared to execute its mission.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | Global Health Engagement | Heroes Behind the Mask | Global Health Engagement

DHA leaders bring expertise to DoD COVID-19 Lab Testing Task Force

Article
5/14/2020
Image of Gen. Payne speaking with a soldier

Testing a key next step in the coronavirus fight

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus

Defending the Homeland: Turning on lifesaving trials at Madigan Army Medical Center

Article
5/13/2020
Image of soldier in front of a laptop

In response to the COVID-19 global pandemic, Madigan is currently supporting nine research protocols designed to address gaps in knowledge.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus

Graduate Nursing Student Tells of Challenges to Pursuing Doctoral Degree during COVID-19

Article
5/12/2020
Image of soldier sitting at desk looking at laptop

Although graduate work is done independently, much of it requires in-person collaboration and data collection.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | National Nurses Week

US Coast Guard spouse volunteers at Maastricht hospital, saves lives

Article
5/12/2020
Image of nurse with mask

Working at the COVID-19 unit does come at a cost – a personal sacrifice that remains mostly unseen.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | Heroes Behind the Mask | National Nurses Week

From the battlefield to the homefront: MHS nurses continue to serve

Article
5/12/2020
Seven soldiers standing behind an American flag

Nurses fill many roles including research, education, leadership

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | Nurses Week | National Nurses Week

A passion for helping and leading: Nurse leads Air Force Medical Service

Article
5/11/2020
Image of Lt. Gen. Dorothy Hogg

During her 36-year career in the Air Force, Hogg has climbed through the ranks and became the first nurse, as well as the first woman, to hold the position of Air Force surgeon general.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | Nurses Week | National Nurses Week

Nurses stay ready during COVID-19 pandemic

Article
5/11/2020
Image of two military nurses talking in a hospital hallway

MHS nurses go above and beyond the call of duty

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | Nurses Week | National Nurses Week

The evolution of military nursing

Article
5/8/2020
Image of vintage military nurses

A look back on nurses who blazed the trail for nurses today

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | Nurses Week | National Nurses Week

AFMES upgrades tech during COVID-19

Article
5/8/2020
Image of two technicians with a CT scanner machine

The new custom built scanner replaces a nearly 15-year-old scanner that was running on dated technology.

Recommended Content:

Armed Forces Medical Examiner System | Coronavirus

MHS Nurse Advice Line proves to be invaluable during COVID-19 pandemic

Article
5/7/2020
Image of military nurse on the phone

Learn about the NAL and other ways to get advice on COVID-19

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | Nurses Week | National Nurses Week

Defending the Homeland: 'I Am Navy Medicine, helping stop the spread of COVID-19'

Article
5/7/2020
Image of nurse wearing a mask

NMRTC Bremerton’s Urgent Care Clinic (UCC) is a microcosm example of nurses – and teamwork - in action.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | Heroes Behind the Mask | Nurses Week | National Nurses Week

DoD to honor nurses during National Nurses Week 2020

Article
5/6/2020
Image of an OR nurse with mask and protective suit

National Nurses Week begins on National Nurses Day, May 6, and culminates May 12.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | Nurses Week | National Nurses Week
<< < ... 16 17 18 19 20  ... > >> 
Showing results 286 - 300 Page 20 of 25

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.