The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is asking recovered COVID-19 patients to donate plasma to assist in the development of blood-related therapies.
People who have fully recovered from the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus have antibodies in their blood to ward off future infections, and plasma can help make treatments for severely ill patients, according to the agency.
“Convalescent plasma is an antibody-rich product made from blood donated by people who have recovered from the disease caused by the virus,” the FDA said in a release April 16, adding that there are studies suggesting “that convalescent plasma has the potential to lessen the severity or shorten the length of illness caused by COVID-19,” the disease associated with the CCP virus.
The agency said those who have recovered from COVID-19 could produce “an immediate impact” by donating plasma to help others who contract the virus.
“In fact, one donation has the potential to help up to four patients. Convalescent plasma can also be used to manufacture a biological product called hyperimmune globulin, which can similarly be used to treat patients with COVID-19,” the news release states. “We encourage individuals to consider donating and hope this information will serve as a helpful resource to facilitate this important act of kindness,” the FDA said.
However, the FDA will only consider patients who have fully recovered from the CCP virus for at least two weeks. They can contact their local blood or plasma donation center, the agency said.
“It is important that we evaluate this potential therapy in the context of clinical trials, through expanded access, as well as facilitate emergency access for individual patients, as appropriate,” according to the release.
Earlier this month, the FDA asked the Red Cross to collect convalescent plasma from patients who have recovered.
In one instance, an Oklahoma man who contracted the virus, possibly during a trip to Europe, said that he donated plasma after he recovered. The plasma was used to treat a woman who had a severe case of COVID-19. Doctors told local station KRMG that the woman who received his plasma has shown dramatic signs of improvement.