By Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Richard Miller / CNSWC Public Affairs
SAN DIEGO, Calif. – About 30 Sailors donated blood during a blood drive at SEAL Team 7 headquarters on Naval Amphibious Base Coronado, January 6, 7 and 9.
The blood drive, organized by Naval Medical Center San Diego, benefitted military hospitals, deployed service members and military families. NMCSD typically hosts three to four blood drives each week in the Southern California area.
“The blood is going toward our Soldiers, Sailors, Marines and Airmen serving overseas, and to our beneficiaries at the hospital,” said Hospital Corpsman 2nd Class Sarah Weaver.
Doreen Rekoski, blood donor recruiter and public affairs specialist for Naval Medical Center San Diego, said NMCSD accepts all types of blood, but needs O negative donors the most.
Rekoski added that NMCSD needs a specific form of O negative blood that is free of a virus called cytomegalovirus, or CMV.
CMV is a virus with flu-like symptoms that is transmitted through body fluid contact, including blood transfusions. CMV rarely causes disease, but the virus can be severe or fatal in premature or low birth weight infants. Hospitals commonly refer to CMV negative blood as “baby blood,” because it the preferred blood for safe transfusion to newborns.
Rekoski said that while people don’t always enjoy the experience of giving blood, Sailors donate to the drive to support a cause and help others.
On average, NMCSD collects about 8,000 units of blood each year.
For more info on military blood drives, visit http://www.militaryblood.dod.mil.