New York Blood Center launches convalescent plasma donation program

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FILE – In this Feb. 18, 2020, file photo, Dr. Zhou Min, a recovered COVID-19 patient who has passed his 14-day quarantine, donates plasma in the city’s blood center in Wuhan in central China’s Hubei province. Plasma from recovered COVID-19 patients contains antibodies that may help reduce the viral load in patients that are fighting the disease. (Chinatopix via AP, File)

NEW YORK (NEWS10) — While COVID-19 has no proven treatment, the New York Blood Center says that blood plasma from recovered patients contains antibodies that could help against the virus.

The convalescent plasma treatments would ideally be used for severe cases, administering a transfusion of the healed donor’s plasma—convalescent plasma—whose antibodies could help clear the virus faster.

“We’re proud to partner with leading medical institutions from New York and beyond in developing this potential treatment. If this treatment proves to be effective, we are prepared to quickly scale our process and activate our network to serve hospitals nationwide.”

Dr. Beth H. Shaz, Chief Medical and Scientific Officer at NYBC

If you had a positive test and your symptoms have been gone for more than two weeks, you can take part in this potentially life-saving new way to address the coronavirus.

Get involved at the NYBC’s website.

NYBC will collect donations, process plasma for infusion, and maintain a plasma bank for hospitals to use for serious or immediately life-threatening infections.

The NYBC is the first to collect plasma donations from those who have been cleared, following the Food and Drug Administration’s decision in late March to approve the treatment on a case-by-case basis.

Donors who qualify for the convalescent plasma donation program will be referred to NYBC by local hospitals. The FDA will then approve patients for treatment one-by-one.

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