New York Blood Center to Collect First Blood Plasma Donations from Recovered COVID-19 Patients to Treat Severe Cases

March 25, 2020

NEW YORK – New York Blood Center (NYBC) will be the first blood center to collect blood plasma donations from people who have recovered from COVID-19 to treat other patients with advanced illness. In the treatment, known as convalescent plasma, the patient is transfused with the donor’s plasma with the goal of using the donor’s antibodies to help clear the virus more rapidly. Yesterday, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the treatment for use on a case by case basis and NYBC will be the first to collect plasma from recovered COVID-19 patients for this purpose.

“We’re proud to partner with leading medical institutions from New York and beyond in developing this potential treatment,” said Beth H. Shaz, MD, Chief Medical and Scientific Officer at New York Blood Center. “If this treatment proves to be effective, we are prepared to quickly scale our process and activate our network to serve hospitals nationwide.”

NYBC will collect the donations, process the plasma for infusion, and maintain a bank for hospitals to treat patients with serious or immediately life-threatening COVID-19 infections. Qualified donors will be referred to NYBC by area hospitals and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) will approve patients for the treatment on a case-by-case basis.

NYBC is one of the largest independent blood centers in the world. Its network serves local communities in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, Missouri, Kansas, Minnesota, Nebraska and Rhode Island. NYBC is prepared to expand convalescent plasma collections across these locations if it proves to be successful.


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