The U.S. blood community has joined the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority in a national effort to support the collection and distribution of convalescent plasma, a potentially life-saving treatment for critically ill COVID-19 patients.
While this coronavirus pandemic is unprecedented, the U.S. blood community has a long history of working together to provide lifesaving blood products to patients during times of need. This new initiative is yet another example of this collaborative spirit. All blood centers are working in tandem to support this initiative and increase production in the coming days and weeks.
Individuals who have contracted COVID-19 and have fully recovered have developed antibodies to the virus; these antibodies may help patients seriously ill with COVID-19 in their recovery. To be eligible to donate convalescent plasma, individuals must meet all regular blood donor requirements, be completely symptom-free for at least 14, as well as meet additional qualifications.
Individuals who have had a confirmed case of COVID-19 and have since experienced a full recovery should contact their local blood center to determine their eligibility. Hospitals and physicians should also contact their regular blood provider for more information.
The safety of collection employees, donors and ultimate recipients remains our top priority. Only those individuals who have recovered fully from COVID-19 are eligible to donate convalescent plasma. Individuals cannot be tested for COVID-19 at a blood center.