URGENT/CRITICAL NEED for O NEGATIVE Red Blood Cell Donations - Winter storms and high volumes of transfusions for trauma and other treatments have depleted supplies of O negative red blood cells to less than 2-day supply. We urgently need donors of all types to continue to give regularly. Donate now and help spread the word

Overview

Mississippi Valley Regional Blood Center will collect plasma donations from patients who have recovered from a COVID-19 infection to help newly diagnosed patients fight the disease. The treatment, known as convalescent plasma therapy, requires plasma provided by donors who have recently recovered from a COVID-19 infection. These donors will have antibodies to help fight COVID-19. The treatment has been used in recent years to treat victims of Ebola, SARS, and H1N1 influenza.

Click here for Frequently Asked Questions

eligibility criteria

  • Must be at least 28 days from recovery of their COVID-19 infection
  • Must have had a positive molecular test (also called PCR or polymerase chain reaction), showing they had a COVID-19 infection. If you are unsure what kind of test you had, please ask your healthcare provider 
  • Meet all standard eligibility criteria for blood donation
  • Donors who have received the COVID-19 vaccination are eligible to donate ALL blood products with no deferral period. The following criteria applies ONLY to donors wishing to donate convalescent plasma:

    • Had symptoms of COVID-19 and a positive test result from a diagnostic test approved, cleared, or authorized by FDA  AND

    • Received the COVID-19 vaccine AFTER diagnosis of COVID-19, AND

    • Are within 6 months after resolution of COVID-19 symptoms.

Please note: Diagnosis of COVID-19 AFTER vaccination does defer donors from giving convalescent plasma donations. For additional questions regarding eligibility, click here.

All convalescent plasma donors will receive an $35 e-gift card!Potential convalescent plasma donors must meet  criteria to be eligible for this e-gift card.

antibody testing

The blood center does NOT do antibody testing on all donors. For Convalescent plasma donors, we accept donors who HAVE HAD a positive molecular test for COVID-19 (SARS-Co-V-2 virus) with limited exceptions.  There are several important reasons. 

  • Patients with molecular confirmation (PCR) and who were sicker (especially if hospitalized) have higher levels of antibody needed in the Convalescent Plasma. These donors are more likely to provide an effective product.
  • Due to a large number of non-definitive antibody tests being used by various laboratories, many of them are not accepted by FDA to qualify good convalescent plasma donors, the Blood Center rely on these results provided by donors to determine antibody levels.
  • Screening large numbers of donors who have not experienced more severe symptoms of COVID-19 illness and who never had a positive PCR test is an expensive and inefficient way to find donors for the Convalescent Plasma program. 
  • It is important for individuals who receive antibody screening results to avoid misinterpretation of the results. 
    • Negative results do not mean you have not been infected—there are false negatives, and antibodies can disappear over time
    • Positive results do not mean that an individual has immunity to COVID-19. 

Donors without an initial positive molecular test but that have had antibody testing done, are encouraged to give a voluntary blood donation.  The products from traditional blood donations help save and enhance patient lives every day and are critical for patients in need.

If criteria changes, we will review and update our practices accordingly.

referral form

Click on the red button below for either self-referrals or care provider referrals.  After reviewing your submission, the Blood Center will follow up with potential donors to schedule a plasma donation at a MVRBC Donor Center. 

Sign Up Here to Give Convalescent Plasma

Questions

patientservices@mvrbc.org 
(833) 610-1025

Please note: The hospital blood bank is required to send a report to  2-Quality@mvrbc.org for any transfusion-related reaction that occurs for patients enrolled in the EAP that receive convalescent plasma.
 

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All convalescent plasma donors will receive an $35 e-gift card!

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Frequently asked questions

FAQs

  • What is Convalescent COVID Plasma?

    Convalescent COVID plasma is collected from patients who have recovered from a COVID-19 infection to help newly diagnosed patients fight the disease. The treatment, known as convalescent plasma therapy, requires plasma provided by donors who have recently recovered from a COVID-19 infection. These donors will have antibodies to help fight COVID-19. The treatment has been used in recent years to treat victims of Ebola, SARS, and H1N1 influenza.

  • Am I eligible to donate Convalescent COVID Plasma?

    Convalescent plasma donors must meet the following criteria:

    • Must be at least 28 days from recovery of their COVID-19 infection
    • Must have had a positive molecular test (also called PCR or polymerase chain reaction), showing they had a COVID-19 infection. If you are unsure what kind of test you had, please ask your healthcare provider 
    • Meet all standard eligibility criteria for blood donation
  • How often can I donate Convalescent COVID Plasma?
    • Donors can donate convalescent plasma every 7 days for 4 weeks and then we recommend to move to every 2 weeks for donor comfort (gives the arms and veins a break)
    • Donors can donate whole blood convalescent plasma every 56 days.
    • Donors can donate automated Convalescent COVID Plasma 7 days after a whole blood convalescent plasma
  • Can I donate after receiving the COVID-19 vaccine?

    Donors who have received the COVID-19 vaccination are eligible to donate ALL blood products with no deferral period. The following criteria applies ONLY to donors wishing to donate convalescent plasma:

    • Had symptoms of COVID-19 and a positive test result from a diagnostic test approved, cleared, or authorized by FDA  AND
    • Received the COVID-19 vaccine AFTER diagnosis of COVID-19, AND
    • Are within 6 months after resolution of COVID-19 symptoms.
  • When will I hear back after submitting my self-referral form?

    Our team is working around the clock to get back to donors who have filled out the form. If you have not heard back within 7 days, please contact our Patient Services team at patientservices@mvrbc.org or call the COVID hotline at (833) 610-1025.

  • How long does it take to donate Convalescent COVID Plasma?

    Please plan for 1- 1 ½ hours for an automated convalescent plasma donation. Actual collection times vary by collection device. A whole blood convalescent plasma donation takes approximately 45 minutes.  

  • Where do I sign up to donate Convalescent COVID Plasma?

    Click here.

  • Does the Blood Center do antibody testing?

    The Blood Center does NOT do antibody testing on all donors. For Convalescent plasma donors, we accept donors who HAVE HAD a positive molecular test for COVID-19 (SARS-Co-V-2 virus) with limited exceptions.  There are several important reasons. Click here for more.

  • When is the last day I can donate Convalescent Plasma after recovering from COVID-19?

    You remain eligible for Convalescent Plasma while your antibodies are detected. If you have additionally received a COVID-19 vaccine , you are eligible for 6 months following complete resolution of symptoms.

  • Can Convalescent Plasma donors be re-infected with COVID-19?

    Reinfection has been rare so far, although as variants spread may become more common. Health officials at the CDC and health departments are actively working to learn more about COVID-19 reinfection. The best way to prevent infection is to continue wearing masks in public places, social distancing at least 6 feet from others, avoiding crowds, washing your hands, and getting vaccinated.

  • What will I receive when I donate Convalescent COVID Plasma?

    Presenting convalescent plasma donors will receive a $35 Amazon.com e-gift card PLUS the current donor promotion, found here.

  • What is the difference between the plasma donated to the Blood Center versus the other plasma centers that pay for plasma?

    The Blood Center requires that all donations come from volunteer donors. We do offer rewards like small gift cards and apparel items for those who donate but do not pay cash. Our donations are used primarily for transfusable blood products including red blood cells, platelets, plasma, and cryoprecipitate. Hospitals require that products for transfusion come from volunteer and not paid donors.  Plasma centers that pay cash for donations can produce medicines and use the plasma for research but it is not used for transfusions. For COVID-19 patients, convalescent plasma transfusions come from plasma donated by volunteers and monoclonal infusions come from plasma that is further fractionated from paid donors. Our Blood Center provides transfusable plasma products to our hospitals. Remaining plasma not used for transfusions is provided to plasma fractionators for further manufacturing into medicines or for research.