KNOXVILLE, TN (WLAF) – MEDIC Regional Blood Center has taken extra steps to keep its staff, donors and visitors safe.
Industry Stat: As of March 19, we have seen more than 12,000 blood drives cancelled across the blood industry, resulting in some 355,000 projected products.
MEDIC Stat as of 03/20/2020:
To date, MEDIC has had 68 drives and 2138 lost products.
MEDIC Regional Blood Center:
- MEDIC Actions:
o Staff, donors and visitors will undergo a daily check-in upon arrival at any facility or mobile drive.
o The check-in will include a temperature check as well as answering if they feel healthy and well and if someone in the household has been diagnosed with COVID-19/Coronavirus.
o Temperature must be 99.5 degrees or less to continue.
o “Based on the interim infection control guidance per the CDC for healthcare settings the use of a respirator or mask is only recommended for the care of patients with known or suspected COVID-19. The preliminary screening questions at blood collection facilities should exclude any individuals with known or suspected COVID-19 from donating blood. Masks would also only protect from splashes and sprays, and not offer respiratory protection.”
o MEDIC will setup waiting areas so that donors are separated and not sitting next to one another.
o Donors may be asked to wait in their car until we are ready to screen them.
o We will not allow more than two donors on a bus in the collection phase at one time.
- After completing the initial check-in, each donor goes through a mini physical that includes a temperature check as well as a
visual check on the donor’s well-being. We look for coughing, nose draining or if the donor is having a hard time breathing.
- Individuals should not donate if they are feeling ill.
- Donors are asked a series of questions that include whether they have traveled outside the country.
- MEDIC follows appropriate infection control standards of donor rooms and mobile buses and uses single-use equipment for
- Blood collected at MEDIC is always tested for various infectious diseases.
- Blood donation is not a mass gathering or social event.
- MEDIC is following Knox County Health Department guidelines and updates.
- According to the FDA, there is no known risk of transmission of COVID-19 through the blood donation process or from blood transfusions.
- According to the FDA, there is no intrinsic risk of the safety of the blood supply, but there is risk to the availability of blood for patients in need because of an increase in cancelled donation appointments and blood drives.
- The blood on the shelves right now is the blood that would be used in a trauma/disaster situation, for surgeries and for cancer patients in need of a blood transfusion due to treatments.
- MEDIC serves 25 hospitals in 22 counties.
- MEDIC is not a healthcare provider and thus does not provide a coronavirus test.
- It is imperative that healthy and well individuals continue to donate in the coming weeks.
- We encourage all donors to make an appointment at one of our four donor centers:
Online HERE. Click the donate tab and then on the center in which you’d like to donate. (WLAF NEWS PUBLISHED – 03/20/2020-1:30PM)