If you’ve had COVID-19 and are fully recovered, the plasma in your blood contains important antibodies against the coronavirus. Offering to donate this antibody-rich plasma can help other people who are suffering from COVID-19.
This particular type of donation is called COVID-19 convalescent plasma, or CCP. Convalescent is an old-fashioned sounding word, but it means you’ve recovered from an illness.
Kentucky Blood Center provides blood products to over 70 hospitals in Kentuckiana, almost all of which are using CCP for transfusion to patients who are currently battling the coronavirus. As of mid-December, more than 580 donors have given 2,000 doses of plasma to help patients at Kentucky hospitals.
Shortly after the FDA authorized CCP treatment at the onset of the pandemic, Kentucky Blood Center became the first community blood center in the United States to draw convalescent plasma for transfusion to patients.
“Kentucky Blood Center has been proud to supply hospitals across the state with this life-saving product since late March,” said Bill Reed, President and CEO of Kentucky Blood Center. “With treatment options being so limited, we are proud to provide recovered Kentuckians with a way to help their neighbors battling COVID-19. Helping save local lives is our mission and it has been very rewarding for our staff to be key partners in this fight.”
Because convalescent plasma is a particularly fragile product that needs to be processed in a short period of time, Kentucky Blood Center uses its internal courier system to pick up every CCP donation from all six donor centers and transport it back to the Lexington facility for processing. KBC has two donor centers in Louisville, two in Lexington, and one each in Pikeville and Somerset. Kentucky Blood Center is the largest independent, full-service, nonprofit blood center in Kentucky, providing services in 90 counties throughout the state.
TO DONATE: Anyone who has received a positive COVID-19 antibody test from a doctor or lab, and those who have tested positive for the virus and fully recovered can submit information to KBC’s online registry (kybloodcenter.org/convalescent-plasma- donation). From there, a team member from Kentucky Blood Center will contact you for additional screening and help you schedule an appointment to donate. Your convalescent plasma can help another patient recover from COVID-19.