Cook County Hospital (aka Stroger) sometimes gets a bad rap. It’s often forgotten that the hospital has a distinguished history. One important event in medical treatment took place there in 1937. The subject was blood.
By the turn of the 20th Century, medical science had learned much about working with blood. Transfusions were becoming common. But blood will go stale after a while. If a patient needed blood, a live donor had to give it, directly and immediately.
Could blood be stored for longer than a few hours? Researchers worked on that problem for decades. During the early 1930s, Russia was able to set up a network of blood depots, where patients could have access to preserved blood. This interested Dr. Bernard Fantus.