CCP: Lifesaving Treatment Options for COVID-19 Patients
If you’ve heard about COVID-19 convalescent plasma (CCP) in the news and wondered what exactly it is and if LifeServe is involved, the answer is an enthusiastic yes!
Convalescent plasma is a blood product collected from donors who have recovered from an infection. This plasma is rich in antibodies to the infection from which they have recovered and can be used as a treatment or to develop a vaccine.
Currently, plasma from people who have fully recovered from a confirmed case of COVID-19 is being used as an experimental treatment in hospitals across the country, including in the Midwest! LifeServe Blood Center was one of the first blood centers to develop a screening and collection program for these very special donors. As of May, more than 150 people recovered COVID-19 have donated their plasma, resulting in more than 1,040 units of CCP for patients in our hospitals! Each and every CCP donor makes a huge impact. One unit of plasma is the recommended dosage per patient. CCP donors can give four units of plasma at once!
“The stories you are hearing in the media of recovered COVID-19 patients are because of convalescent plasma donations from community blood centers like LifeServe,” explained LifeServe Blood Center Medical Director Dr. Alex Smith.
For-profit plasma centers maybe be tooting their horns about how they’re helping out with the COVID-19 pandemic, but this paid plasma program does not provide lifesaving help to current patients battling the virus in the hospital. Instead, they are focused on research and pharmaceutical needs. LifeServe can do both.
“The role of a community blood center is unique in the sense that we are responsible for collecting, testing, and distributing all blood and blood components needed by our local hospitals, but can also support pharmaceutical and research needs for blood-related products.” said Dr. Smith. “LifeServe Blood Center is not only collecting CCP for immediate use for COVID-19 patients, we are also using some of these products to support the work to find a COVID-19 vaccine.”
At the time of publication, LifeServe Blood Center has fulfilled more than 470 CCP orders from our hospital partners. More than twenty hospitals have transfused this plasma from LifeServe donors.
If you or someone you know has recovered completely from COVID-19 and are interested in donating convalescent plasma to hospital patients, click here or call 800-287-4903 to get enrolled in our program.