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Family hosts blood drive to thank hospital for treating their son
Hinsdale – Leading up to the birth of their son James, Nina and Jeff Koehler and their doctors believed everything was as it should be.

“We thought James was totally healthy,” Nina Koehler said. “The whole pregnancy was normal. But when I was in labor, I could see my OB was concerned.”

That’s because meconium was present at the birth, a sign Koehler’s baby was under stress. James’s skin was also spotty, indicating an infection.

Born at Adventist La Grange Memorial Hospital, James was given an immediate blood transfusion for severe anemia. He was transferred to Adventist Hinsdale Hospital, where he received antibiotics and four more blood platelet transfusions. Koehler was unable to hold her son for the first four days of his life.

“He was at the hospital for almost 12 days, and the first five days were the worst,” the Naperville resident said. “They could not tell what was causing the infection, but his body was working hard to fight it.”

The doctors and staff at Adventist Hinsdale Hospital did all they could to help him along.

“Every nurse, every doctor, they were unbelievably amazing,” Koehler said. “It was such a team effort, and they were all like a big family.”

Today, James is a happy baby and will turn 1 this month. To thank the hospital for its work, and to replenish the blood her son needed during his stay, Koehler and her family are conducting a community blood drive from 1-5 p.m. April 27 at the Donor Center at Adventist Hinsdale Hospital, 121 N. Elm St. in Hinsdale.

“What the Koehler’s are doing is a wonderful celebration of life,” said Cindy Wolfer, RN, DNS, HP. Wolfer is the regional nurse manager for the Adventist Lab Partners Blood Center. “Once you’ve been through an experience like they had, you come to realize that blood truly is life. So we’re looking forward to being a part of this celebration.”

When the family first started talking about donating blood, their goal was to replace the five units James needed. They shared their desire on social media, and since then, 17 people have stepped forward to offer their own donation. Koehler is hoping for 50.

“You so rarely have the chance to give back to people who have helped you,” Koehler said. “That’s why we want to do this blood drive.”

Anyone interested in participating in the drive can sign up for a time by visiting http://tinyurl.com/lyrc5tt.

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Adventist Midwest Health includes Adventist Bolingbrook Hospital, Adventist GlenOaks Hospital, Adventist Hinsdale Hospital and Adventist La Grange Memorial Hospital. To find a physician, visit www.keepingyouwell.com.

Physicians on the medical staff of Adventist Midwest Health Hospitals are independent contractors, and are not agents of the hospitals.

Media contact: Chris LaFortune, communications specialist, Adventist Midwest Health, christopher.lafortune@ahss.org; (630) 856-2354.