Vitalant has launched a program to treat COVID-19 patients with blood plasma donated by people who have recovered from the disease.
Known as “convalescent plasma,” this blood component contains antibodies that may give patients an extra boost to fight their illness.
Currently, there are no vaccines or proven treatments for COVID-19 because the virus is so new. Although trials for a vaccine are underway, it is expected to be many months before one is approved.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has identified and approved convalescent plasma treatment as an “emergency investigational new drug.” It is currently the only antibody treatment available to COVID-19 patients and, as such, is a promising new tool.
With the help of our local communities, hospital partners and extensive research experience, Vitalant is gearing up to help patients fight this novel infectious disease with the help of willing recovered COVID-19 patients.
The company is seeking convalescent plasma donors to help patients. Eligibility criteria are:
- Prior diagnosis of COVID-19, documented by a laboratory test
- Complete resolution of symptoms for at least 14 days
- Meet all other current FDA donor eligibility requirements to donate plasma
Even with these requirements, there may be additional tests or other criteria required. In some instances, those who have recovered from COVID-19 may be able to donate, even if they did not have an initial laboratory test.
Vitalant will only accept donors who meet all FDA-required donor eligibility criteria and are symptom-free for at least 14 days.
Potential donors can only donate if they have applied and have been accepted to the program. Those who meet that criteria and want to donate plasma are encouraged to apply through the Vitalant website vitalant.org/COVIDFree. For more information, please call 866-287-5762.