By Stephanie Malench
The American Red Cross is seeking plasma donations from donors who have completely recovered from COVID-19 so that it can be given to patients as a treatment for serious or immediately life threatening COVID-19 infections.
Called convalescent plasma, this treatment is being evaluated because of the antibodies present in the plasma that attacks the virus.
Those that have recovered from COVID-19 and are interested in helping need to go to www.redcrossblood.org and click on Learn More under COVID-19 Convalescent Plasma Program to complete a short questionnaire regarding eligibility.
The American Red Cross is also in desperate need of regular blood donations due to many blood drives being cancelled.
The American Red Cross Blood Donation Center for Illinois is located at 10886 Lincoln Trail in Fairview Heights.
Because of the social distancing and crowd size requirements to flatten the curve of the pandemic, potential donors must call 1-800-733-2767 at least 24 hours in advance to set up an appointment.
The donation center is open from 11:30 am-7:30 pm Monday, thru Wednesday, 10:30 am-6:30 pm on Thursday, and Friday through Sunday from 7 am until 3 pm.
Drives are also scheduled for Thursday, April 23 at two locations. Appointments must be made through the Red Cross for these drives at least 24 hours in advance.
The first is the Club Fitness at 1234 Central Park Dr. in O’Fallon from 10 am until 4 pm.
A second is scheduled to be held at the Nameoki United Methodist Church at 1900 Pontoon Rd in Granite City from 3-7 pm. Appointments are currently full at this location but spots may open up from cancellations.