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‘You can actually save a life:’ Community Blood Center calls for donations of convalescent plasma

Coronavirus

APPLETON, Wis. (WFRV) — The Community Blood Center is asking for plasma donations from people who have recovered from the coronavirus.

“The plasma has antibodies which can fight against Covid-19,” Kristine Belanger, COO of the Community Blood Center said, “so it is given to patients who are seriously ill with Covid-19 and those antibodies help fight the infection.”

It’s called convalescent plasma, and it’s one of the only treatments available to coronavirus patients.

According to a release from the Community Blood Center, it’s been attributed to saving more than 100,000 lives.

“It’s one of the rare volunteer things that you can do where you can actually save a life,” Belanger said.

With cases of the coronavirus surging, the national supply of convalescent plasma is expected to last only a few more weeks.

Belanger told Local 5 that her organization reached out to area hospitals recently to survey their need for the special plasma.

“The local hospitals were saying that they were continuing to transfuse convalescent plasma and were going to need it into the future,” she said.

So, they’re putting out a call to everyone who has had the coronavirus in the past six months and made a recovery to consider donating plasma.

“What we do ask is that they provide evidence of a positive diagnostic test for Covid-19,” Belanger said.

After a donor is all set, she says, the rest is relatively easy, “the actual donation process itself takes about 45 minutes.”

It’s also, Belanger assures, relatively pain-free, “I like to think about the patient in the hospital and what they’re going through and how they’re fighting their serious medical condition.”

If you haven’t had the coronavirus, you can still help out with a blood donation.

“We are looking for blood donors of all types,” Belanger said.

CLICK HERE TO LEARN MORE ABOUT DONATING CONVALESCENT PLASMA

CLICK HERE TO LEARN MORE ABOUT MAKING A BLOOD DONATION

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