DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) — The spike in coronavirus cases has caused a high demand for convalescent plasma donations from COVID-19 survivors.
COVID-19 convalescent plasma is crucial in treating critically ill COVID-19 patients.
After local hospitals performed their highest number of CCP transfusions last week, the Community Blood Center put a call out to survivors to help.
“If we’re going to see this increase in demand, we’re not going to be able to meet with with the current donor base we have,” says Mark Pompilio, Public Relations & Marketing Manager for the Community Blood Center.
In April, the Community Blood Center started collecting plasma from COVID-19 survivors. Becky Hancock from Xenia is one of those survivors.
“I had body aches. I would just say it felt like the flu,” describes Becky. “I had fatigue. I just layed on the couch for ten days. And my smell went away.”
Tuesday was her second time donating plasma.
“Just wanted something good to come out of me having COVID,” says Becky. “It’s a good way to give a gift–an anonymous gift.”
The plasma is rich in antibodies and vital for treating others with the disease. Typically, one CCP donation can be divided into three doses. Some patients may receive two or more doses depending on the severity of their symptoms.
“I am not somebody who gave blood, pretty much have kind of an irrational fear of needles,” admits Greg Hunt of Kettering who is also COVID-19 survivor. “I had a very mild case and felt very fortunate.”
Tuesday was also his second time of donating plasma.
“I don’t think there’s anything more important I can do to help people that have COVID,” states Greg.
The Community Blood Center is now looking for other survivors who are willing to donate.
“If you’ve survived COVID-19 and you’re looking around for what this all means, what it means for me to get sick and I got well and other people didn’t, I think sometimes people are saying this is my calling,” says Pompilio.
From Apr. 6-Oct. 19 the Community Blood Center has shipped 1,471 doses of CCP. During the week of Oct. 12, the Community Blood Center collected CCP from 32 donors, but shipped 178 doses.
Because of the demand, the rules for donating a slightly more relaxed. CCP donors can donate every two weeks. After four donations, they are required to take a month off.
The blood center also continues to need blood donations, with Type O-positive in demand.
For more information or how to donate, click here.