SANTA RITA, Guam
– Sailors assigned to U.S. Naval Base
Guam and its tenant commands donated blood at the Charles King
Fitness Center on NBG May 3.
Lt. John Stephan, assigned to U.S. Naval
Hospital Guam and blood bank officer in charge of the hospital’s
blood donor center, said the blood drive was part of the armed
services blood program, “Power of Blood.”
“The Power of Blood program, of which U.S. Naval Hospital Guam’s
blood donor center is a member, is to ensure that we have enough
blood for our medical treatment facilities and also for our combat
operations that are going on in Afghanistan and Iraq,” Stephan said.
The armed services blood program donations are used only for
military members and their families. By supporting the blood
requirements for military treatment facilities, armed services blood
program provides blood to support overseas units, and supports
contingencies within and outside the continental United States.
According to Stephan, it’s important for the blood to be stored and
readily available for patients at the medical treatment facilities
and also for ships forward deployed in the area.
“On Guam we’re supporting blood for [various commands], for their
operations and also field operations for the Marines in the area,”
This particular blood drive was organized by Legalman 1st Class (AW)
Kristina Grant, assigned to the Guam branch of U.S. Region Legal
Service Office Japan, and Yeoman 2nd Class Shane Belgrave, assigned
to Naval Base Guam headquarters.
“The hospital asked me if I could be the liaison coordinator for
Naval Base Guam,” Grant said..“We’re trying to get blood donors here
on Guam so that [Naval Hospital Guam] doesn’t have to send to
Okinawa for blood, thus making Guam self-sustaining.”
Belgrave said the goal of the drive was to get a least 20 good
donations, but he is still hopeful that they will receive more,
saying that sooner or later they are going to need blood from these
“It’s important because you’re not only donating for yourself and
your family, but you’re also donating for other Sailors, Marines,
and Army,” Belgrave said.
Stephan said that donating blood is a simple process. The donor
registers, fills out a few forms and completes a simple medical
screening, which includes checking vitals and a finger prick to test
the donor’s hemoglobin. The donor is then issued their blood bag and
then sent to the donation area. Donors can even use the Internet to
begin the process.
“People can register online on the E-donor program, and anybody that
can gain access to our DoD (Department of Defense) medical
facilities can donate blood to us,” he said.
This blood drive is just one part of this ongoing program. Stephan
said the center will be sending people to Charles King Fitness
Center quarterly and to other commands like Naval Computer and
Telecommunications Station Guam, Andersen Air Force Base and any
other command that may be interested in hosting a blood drive.
“There are also other facilities on the island that we’ll be going
to,” he said. “We’ll be going to military facilities around the
island to collect blood products.”
The armed services blood program consists of approximately 81 blood
banks and blood donor centers worldwide operated by the Army, Navy
and Air Force. The program provides quality blood products and
services to the armed forces in peace and war time.