Having a constant supply of lifesaving blood products available to customers at Landstuhl Regional Medical Center is critical to saving lives. Without these blood products, Landstuhl would not be able to operate as an emergency facility or support their daily mission of caring for members across Europe, the Middle East, and Africa.
Tech. Sgt. Déja Kiziah, 86th Medical Squadron non commissioned officer in charge of shipping, is the reason people in need of these medical products are given a second chance at life. Kiziah ensures that warfighters across U.S. European Command and U.S. Africa Command receive lifesaving blood products on a continuous basis, while also supporting various missions and exercises.
In addition to the blood customers she routinely supplies, Kiziah also coordinated the shipment of 60 blood components to multiple teams in support of exercise African Lion, a multinational joint and combined exercise conducted in the Kingdom of Morocco.
African Lion consists of approximately 1,200 U.S. military personnel from the U.S., Egypt, Morocco, Mauritania, Senegal, Tunisia, Belgium, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, the United Kingdom, Austria, and Portugal.
For this mission to be successful, Kiziah had to coordinate multiple flight requests with Air Force partners in order to guarantee that the blood arrived in time for POCs on ground at the destinations.
“I think the biggest thing for the donor center that’s so challenging is that this mission never stops. No matter what day it is, what holiday it is, the mission goes 24/7. So, at the end of the day, if we have blood that needs to be processed and labeled, our team is in here doing it. If we need blood collected, our team is collecting,” said 1st Lt. Nyree Watts, chief of the Armed Services Blood Bank Center for Europe.
To add to the challenge of supporting African Lion, Kiziah had to make sure that the shelf-life of the products she supplied could carry the teams through the end of the exercise. Kiziah sent a combination of low titer blood group “O” whole blood, liquid plasma, and packed red blood cells to alleviate the teams from the burden of carrying and maintaining any frozen blood products.
Kiziah’s drive for excellence, attention to detail and dedication to the mission is key to the safety of warfighters, making her the perfect candidate for Airlifter of the Week at the world’s best wing.