KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) – Medic Regional Blood Center in Knoxville supplies 25 area hospitals. UT Medical Center, Children’s Hospital, Fort Sanders Regional Medical Center and Covenant Health are among its largest recipients.
“During the summer we are always low, we usually run low on blood just due to people traveling vacations so the donations dip,” said Marketing Coordinator for MEDIC, Darren Ellis.
Using an internal system, MEDIC can gauge the level of blood supply at any given time.
“Our inventory report shows six weeks out three weeks out and one week out,” Ellis said. “Green, orange and red – red being we’re in a low level, orange being we’re on the precipice but we’re ok and green being good.”
Preventing MEDIC’s blood supply from reaching that red level is critical in preparing for the worst, like what the nation has seen in the recent mass casualty shootings in El Paso, TX and Dayton, OH.
“What happens is when it gets to a red level our medical staff then relay that information to the hospitals to let them know to try and use their blood as best they can,” said Ellis. “So we do prepare them and let them know that we are running a little low and to prepare yourself.”
Currently, MEDIC is at the red level for O+ and orange level for O- donors.
Each unit of blood can save up to three lives. Each unit donated is viable for 42 days.