People Step Forward to Donate COVID 19 Convalescent Plasma

People Step Forward to Donate COVID-19 Convalescent Plasma

(April 8, 2020 - Miami, Florida)  OneBlood, the not-for-profit blood center serving Florida, North Carolina and other parts of the southeastern United States, is actively collecting plasma from people who have recovered from the coronavirus so it can be transfused to people with life-threatening coronavirus infection in hopes of aiding their recovery. 
Miami Mayor Francis Suarez was OneBlood’s first COVID-19 convalescent plasma donor, and less than a week later, several more people have stepped forward to donate. Among the qualified donors, a cardiologist and a registered dietician.  

The experimental treatment is approved by the FDA to be used on an emergency basis and is called “COVID-19 convalescent plasma”.  
“OneBlood is actively identifying qualified donors and arranging for their donations.  In some cases, donations have been issued to hospitals within 24 hours of a person donating,” said Susan Forbes, senior vice president of corporate communications and public relations at OneBlood.

People who recover from coronavirus infection have developed antibodies to the virus that remain in the plasma portion of their blood.  Transfusing the plasma that contains the antibodies into a person still fighting the virus can provide a boost to the patient’s immune system and potentially help them recover.


In addition to State Health Departments, OneBlood is working directly with their hospital partners and physicians to identify people who have recovered from the coronavirus who can be potential donors.  OneBlood has also launched a social media initiative to bring heightened awareness to people who have recovered from the virus, letting them know that they are needed and could hold the potential key to helping critically ill coronavirus patients recover.  

“Hospitals are eager to use this therapeutic treatment.  OneBlood has the ability to help during an unprecedented time and our team is working around the clock to meet the growing demand for COVID-19 convalescent plasma,” said Forbes.  

Find Out More About COVID-19 Convalescent Plasma

In addition to local efforts, OneBlood is also cooperating with the federal government and anticipates participating in a national-level initiative to be able to provide convalescent plasma when and where it is needed. 
OneBlood is one of the largest blood centers in the country and already has the technology in place to be able to collect, test and process plasma from donors.

Donor Eligibility Requirements
•    COVID-19 convalescent plasma must only be collected from recovered individuals if they are eligible to donate blood
•    Required testing must be performed and the donation must be found suitable
•    Prior diagnosis of COVID-19 documented by a laboratory test
•    Complete resolution of symptoms at least 14 days prior to donation
•    Have a negative result for COVID-19 
•    Meet all standard FDA blood donation requirements

In addition, the recipients of the plasma will also have to meet FDA criteria in order to qualify to receive this therapy for treating life-threatening COVID-19.
 


Generally healthy people age 16 or older who weigh at least 110 pounds can donate blood. Photo ID is required. To learn more about the importance of blood donation and how donors can target the power of their blood type visit oneblood.org. All donors receive a wellness checkup of blood pressure, pulse, temperature and iron count, including a cholesterol screening, plus a surprise gift.

One of three people will need blood in their lifetime. Blood that is donated today will likely be transfused within two to three days. The turn-around is that fast, the need is constant.

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