The Heart of America Association of Blood Banks is a nonprofit, professional organization dedicated to improving Transfusion Medicine by fostering the exchange of information and bringing education opportunities to blood bank and transfusion medicine professionals.  The HAABB hosts two annual meetings for the Kansas City & St Louis areas. 








HAABB 50th Anniversary 

FALL 2017 Meeting PREVIEW



Case Study:  Management of Immune Thrombocytopenia In an Unplanned Pregnancy

Jennifer Meyer

Mercy Hospital St. Louis, School for Clinical Laboratory Science 

This case looks into the management of ITP in a unplanned pregnancy of a teenage patient refractory to standard treatments.  The vital role of platelet transfusions in this patient are demonstrated throughout the pregnancy as various attempts are made to maintain platelet counts above 30,000/uL.  An overview of ITP and other causes of thrombocytopenia in pregnancy will be discussed briefly.  The potential effects of ITP on the fetus and the outcome of the case will reveal the effectiveness of the treatments given. 

Jennifer Meyer is a recent graduate and valedictorian of the Mercy Hospital St. Louis School of Clinical Laboratory Science class of 2016-2017.  Upon graduation, Jennifer accepted a position as a Lab Tech for IDEXX laboratories in St. Louis. Jennifer spent one year as a Lab Safety Coordinator at the University of Missouri-St. Louis right before applying with Mercy.  Most of her career before going to school for her MLS was in biomedical research at St. Louis University where she worked as a Senior Research Assistant for the Department of Molecular Microbiology & Immunology.   


Emerging Transfusion-Transmitted Infectious Diseases

Dr. Scott Koepsell
Assistant Professor
University of Nebraska Medical Center

New and old infectious diseases are constantly presenting a threat to our blood supply.  The objective of this presentation is to review emerging transfusion-transmitted diseases, discuss the current regulatory response to current disease threats, and outline future strategies to prevent transfusion-transmitted diseases.

Dr. Scott Koepsell is the Medical Director for the Division of Transfusion and Transplantation Services a Nebraska Medicine, and Assistant Professor in the Department of Pathology and Microbiology at the University of Nebraska Medical Center.  He has served on the Transfusion-Transmitted Disease Committee of the AABB since 2012

Case Study:  Just a Simple Antibody, J/K...

Lindsay Peters

Supervisor, Reference Laboratory
Mississippi Valley Regional Blood Center

Case Study Objectives:

  1. Discuss the investigation of high incidence antibodies
  2. Discuss the importance of investigating discrepancies
  3. Discuss benefits of molecular testing
  4. Discuss use of molecular testing in further investigation and decision making about appropriate products
  5. Discuss hyper responders


Lindsay Peters graduated in 2008 with a bachelor's degree in Clinical Laboratory Science.  She began working in blood bank right away.  In 2013, she obtained SBB Certification.  Currently, she is working with a mentor through a Protege/Mentor program to develop Immunohematology Knowledge and Leadership skills.  Attending and speaking at educational meeting is one of her favorite things to do. 

Antibody Detection Test Negative?  Don't Be Fooled! - Understanding When Antibody Detection Tests Don't Detect Alloantibodies

Janis Hamilton
Manager, Immunohematology Reference Laboratory
American Red Cross, Southeast Michigan Region

Have you ever gotten a negative antibody detection test on a patient’s sample, only to be surprised when crossmatches with donor units are incompatible or the patient’s clinical response suggests red cell destruction? It does happen! Is it an antibody? Is the antibody detection test result wrong? Do you know where to start your investigation? Using a case study format where you choose the next move, you will learn strategies for resolution by working through scenarios where this can be found.  Armed with this information, you won’t be fooled again.

The participant will be able to:

  • Describe at least two situations where the antibody detection test is negative but alloantibody is present in a plasma.
  • Describe factors that may impact differences in antibody detection and crossmatch results.
  • Given a situation that suggests a red cell antibody is present following a negative antibody detection test, outline additional studies to be performed.

Jan Hamilton is the Manager of the Immunohematology Reference Laboratory (IRL) at the American Red Cross-Southeastern Michigan Region in Detroit, Michigan. She received her Bachelor’s Degree in Allied Medical Professions from The Ohio State University and Master of Science in Medical Technology/Immunohematology from Wayne State University, Detroit. Specialist in Blood Banking training was done at William Beaumont Hospital, Royal Oak, Michigan. She is past chair of the AABB IRL Accreditation Program Unit and the ACSP Board of Registry Blood Bank Examination Committee and is currently serving on the ASCP Workshop and On-Demand Webcast committee. Jan co-authored the chapter "Identification of Antibodies to Red Cell Antigens" in both the 18th and upcoming 19th editions of the AABB Technical Manual. She also is co-author of Antibody Identification: Art or Science? A Case Study Approach and the recently released companion volumeInvestigating Positive DAT Results: A Case Study Approach. Her special interest is performing and teaching about serological problem solving. Along with a small group of colleagues, she is part of the Indian Immunohematology Initiative which focuses on hands-on immunohematology education in India and neighboring South Asian countries.




Training and Education in the Blood Bank;  From Student to New Employee to Seasoned Veteran
Lorraine Blagg
Education & Development Coordinator
The John Hopkins Hospital

Description: Training is a term that encompasses the education that we do in the laboratory, but not all training is considered equal. Would you train a student the same way you would train a new employee? Would you provide the same education to a seasoned veteran as you do a new employee? This session will help differentiate training and education for the student, new employee, and the seasoned veteran.


At the end of the session, the attendee will be able to:

  • Differentiate the goals of a student, a new employee, and a seasoned veteran
  • Identify at least two methods to increase cognitive and psychomotor performance in students and New Employees
  • Integrate onboarding into new employee training
  • Create opportunities for continued education at your organization

Lorraine Blagg is the Education & Development Coordinator for The Johns Hopkins Hospital Division of Transfusion Medicine and the Program Director for The Johns Hopkins Hospital Specialist in Blood Banking Technology Program. She co-chairs the Johns Hopkins Medicine Continuing Education Committee and is an assistant editor for Transfusion News. Her responsibilities encompass education of MLT students, MLS students, residents, fellows, & SBB students; training, continuing education and competency of Blood Bank personnel; and community activities with elementary and high school students.

Case Study - An Interesting Case of IgA Deficiency on a Saturday Afternoon

Dr. Emily Coberly

Assistant Professor of Clinical Pathology, Medical Director Transfusion Services

University of Missouri, Columbia

This presentation will

  • Review the epidemiology and diagnostic criteria for selective IgA deficiency.
  • Discuss management of transfusion requirements for patients with IgA deficiency.
  • Review options for managing preoperative anemia in patients to minimize transfusion requirements.

Dr. Emily Coberly completed medical school and Internal Medicine residency at the University of Missouri Columbia, then practiced inpatient and outpatient Internal Medicine for 5 years.

She then completed a residency in Clinical Pathology at MU, followed by a Transfusion Medicine fellowship at Vanderbilt University. She is board certified in Internal Medicine, Clinical Pathology, Clinical Informatics, and Transfusion Medicine and is currently the Medical Director of Transfusion Services at MU.


Case Study:  DAT Negative Autoimmune Hemolytic Anemia

Christina Barron

IRL Director

American Red Cross, Missouri-Illinois Region and Greater Ozarks-Arkansas Region

In this case, we will examine the serological investigation of DAT negative autoimmune hemolytic anemia.

Christina Barron is the IRL Director for the Missouri-Illinois and Greater Ozarks-Arkansas Regions, with laboratories in Lenexa, Kansas; St. Louis, Missouri; and Little Rock, Arkansas.  She began her career with the American Red Cross in 1988 and also serves as an AABB IRL assessor.  

Blood Banking and Risk Management: Understanding Your Risk and the Tools to Manage It

Maggie Neustadt

Director of Risk Management

Saint Luke's Hospital, Kansas City, Missouri

  • Understand what drives a patient to sure for medical negligence
  • What are the basic elements of a medical negligence lawsuit
  • What are high areas of risk and liability for blood banks
  • What tools are available to mitigate and manage your risk