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Lifesavers at Carilion show need for blood donations

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ROANOKE AND NEW RIVER VALLEY (WSLS 10) - WSLS 10 is proud to partner with Carilion Clinic and Virginia Blood Services for the 10 cares blood drive.

As part of the blood drive, we wanted to show the work of people who save lives.

Life Guard 11 is based out of Carilion New River Valley Medical Center. It's the busiest of three air ambulances, better known as Life Guard Helicopters.

There is a lot of equipment in the helicopter to help patients but something missing that is saving lives is blood.

"Most of our patients need the blood to recover the way they do," says Adam Berger, Flight Nurse. "It's lifesaving no question."

Carilion Clinic is working on finding a way to store blood in the helicopters for patients in the future. In the meantime, they get their blood to bring up with them at the hospitals.

Carilion Roanoke Memorial Hospital uses 20,000 units of blood a year. A unit is about one donation you would give at a blood drive.

"In the last few days we've had very sick trauma patients that have come and required not only an operation immediately upon arrival but required more than ten units of blood within a couple of hours," says Bryan Collier, head of trauma services.

Roanoke Memorial Hospital is a level one trauma center the only one within a 100 mile radius of Roanoke.