The present invention is directed to a new and useful apparatus and method for absorbing and collecting blood and other fluids which accumulate in a patient during surgical procedures. An absorbent portion is connected to a suction source. When the absorbent portion is placed in contact with the fluid to be collected, the fluid is absorbed by the absorbent portion. Operation of the suction source provides a vacuum which draws the fluid away from the absorbent portion and out of the body. The fluid can be drawn into a receptacle for later cleansing and reuse. A flexible backing plate is attached to the absorbent portion. Channels formed a long the backing plate direct the vacuum evenly across the absorbent portion of the device such that fluid is drawn evenly from the absorbent portion. Suction tubing connects the absorbent portion to the suction source. The absorbent portion and attached backing plate can be folded to fit into small areas.