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How can my plasma help other patients?
While COVID-19 has no proven treatment, plasma donated by those who have recovered (called convalescent plasma) may help patients fighting COVID-19. This is because your body has developed antibodies against the virus. Historically, convalescent plasma has been successfully used to treat similar diseases such as the Spanish Flu, SARS, MERS, and H1N1.
How do I qualify to donate convalescent plasma?
The first step is to fill out a form at sandiegobloodbank.org/donateplasma to express interest.
You may qualify if you had:
Donors must also meet the standard requirements for blood donation and will be screened at the time of donation.
Where can I donate?
San Diego Blood Bank has locations throughout San Diego County. Once you are qualified, we will help you find a convenient location.
What if I don’t have a copy of my test results?
San Diego Blood Bank can work with your healthcare provider to obtain proper records.
How many people will my donation help?
Each plasma donation is usually 800-1000 mL and one dose for a COVID-19 patient is 200-250 mL. Your donation can help as many as 3-4 people fight this virus!
What is the process for donating plasma?
Plasma is donated through a process called apheresis. Your blood is collected and processed in real time to separate the plasma and return the rest of the blood components (red blood cells and platelets) back to you. The entire process, including registration and recovering in the canteen area for 15 minutes post donation takes approximately 75 minutes.
When I donate plasma do I lose all my antibodies that help my own immunity?
Much like regular blood and plasma donation, only some of the circulating antibodies are collected from COVID convalescent plasma (CCP) donation. The vast majority of cells which make antibodies are maintained by the donor. There is no clinical evidence to support an adverse impact on immunocompetence in blood donors.
How often can I donate plasma?
Normal plasma donation intervals are every 4 weeks. Depending on how much is donated at one time, you may be able to donate convalescent plasma more frequently. San Diego Blood Bank will work with you directly to determine what is appropriate.