CHI Health is proud to offer one of the area’s only programs dedicated to reducing or eliminating the need for blood transfusions.
The Blood Conservation Program provides quality medical and surgical care without the use of donor blood. Our program is one of only 150 such programs in the United States. Over 160 physicians participate in the program covering a multitude of specialties. Skilled surgeons use meticulous surgical techniques to minimize a patient’s blood loss before, during, and after procedures. Since 1994, thousands of surgeries have been performed without blood transfusions.
The Bloodless Alternative
Interest in bloodless medicine and surgery has resulted from a variety of religious and social concerns, safety concerns, and the constant shortage of blood products. Many improvements have been made in both technology and surgical techniques, making transfusion free surgery a reality for many patients.
The Omaha community requested blood conservation options for medical and surgical procedures. We listened and assembled an impressive team of physicians and support staff to deliver a variety of non-blood alternatives, with the ultimate goal of enabling people to live healthier lives.
It’s Your Choice
The Blood Conservation Program is available to all patients who wish to avoid using donated blood. In providing patients with quality care, we assure that their personal wishes will be honored and that they will be treated with respect and dignity prior to, during, and after treatment.
If you decide to participate in the program, there are two choices:
- Level 1: No blood transfusions ever.
- Level 2: You may indicate that you prefer that the physician employs blood conservation techniques rather than blood transfusions, and that you will only accept a transfusion if a life-or-death situation arises.
The Team Approach
The program is not just a promise from one physician not to use banked blood. Our program offers a team approach that includes the program coordinator, medical director, physicians, nurses, technicians, and other support personnel.
Our Medical Director is Dr. Marcus Balters, who has worked with our program for many years and has a good understanding of blood conservation methodology. Mark Eldredge is the full time coordinator for the program and acts as a liaison between the patient, the patient’s family, physicians and staff. Mark can also assist if there is a need to transfer a patient from a hospital that does not have a Blood Conservation Program.
Treatment of Minors
We respect the concerns of parents wishing to avoid transfusions of donor blood for their children. We will work with parents to pursue treatment options. However, please be aware that federal and state law may impose limitations on withholding blood transfusions for minors in a life-or-death situation.