Cornerstones of Black History--Dr. Charles Drew - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

02/06/06/03

Cornerstones of Black History--Dr. Charles Drew

Dr. Charles Drew Dr. Charles Drew

A lifesaving technique started about 60 years ago by Dr. Charles Drew--blood plasma preservation--is still saving lives to this day. In the early 1940s, England was faced with the possible German invasion. The American Red Cross realized that blood might be needed on a large scale. So they chose Dr. Drew to run the program. He had already established his expertise in the field in his post doctoral thesis entitled "Banked Blood."

Drew developed an efficient method for the mass production and shipment of plasma for blood transfusions. In anticipation of America's involvement in the war the following year, the American Red Cross Blood Bank started a year later under Drew's direction. This project saved thousands of lives of American soldiers wounded in World War II.

He later resigned from the post in protest over the segregation of the black and white blood, and returned to not only continue his work as a surgeon, but also train an entire generation of black students who wanted to become doctors.

 

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