Nursing & Healthcare News

Convalescent Plasma Therapy

Seeking donations from recovered COVID-19 patients

  • One donation could help up to four patients
  • More than 2,300 participating patients at 1,663 clinical sites
  • Therapy still experimental and only given to sickest patients

Do you have patients who have fully recovered from COVID-19? Ask them if they would consider donating plasma for an experimental treatment protocol.

Antibody-Rich Plasma

There’s still no approved treatment for COVID-19, but the FDA recently approved expanded access to an experimental treatment using convalescent plasma: blood plasma from patients who have recently recovered from the 2019 novel coronavirus.  The theory is that the antibodies in the plasma could help the immune systems of other patients to better fight the disease.

Donations Needed

Mayo Clinic is leading a nationwide effort to further investigate this treatment protocol, but that effort urgently needs plasma donations from former COVID-19 patients. FDA Commissioner Stephen M. Hahn, M.D., is asking people who have been diagnosed with and fully recovered from COVID-19 to consider donating plasma for that purpose.

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“Those individuals who have recovered from COVID-19 could have an immediate impact in helping others who are severely ill,” says Hahn. “In fact, one donation has the potential to help up to four patients.” People interested in donating can visit covidplasma.org, a website established by the nonprofit organization AABB (which accredits blood banks and other institutions involved in transfusion medicine) that has more information about convalescent plasma and the eligibility guidelines for potential donors.

Hiring Now

The blood bank locator tool on the AABB website, www.aabb.org, now features the option to search for local donation sites accepting convalescent plasma.

Receiving Plasma Therapy

Because convalescent plasma therapy is a highly experimental treatment whose benefits are uncertain and whose hazards are still unknown, the therapy is only available to severely ill adult COVID-19 patients, and only if their physician and medical facility first register with the Mayo Clinic program.

Patients or providers interested in learning more should visit www.uscovidplasma.org. There are currently almost 2,300 participating patients and more than 2,200 participating physicians at more than 1,600 registered clinical sites across the U.S.


Aaron Severson is a freelance writer, editor, and writing consultant as well as the associate editor of Working Nurse.


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