The Central California Blood Center is proud to announce that it will be the first blood center in the United States to produce pathogen-reduced plasma from patients who have successfully recovered from the Coronavirus in order to provide local and national hospitals with pathogen-reduced, convalescent plasma for patients currently battling the life-threatening COVID-19 virus.

If you yourself have recovered from COVID-19 and are interested in participating, click “help now” and complete the donor eligibility form. If you are a healthcare professional who is interested in receiving convalescent plasma or want to refer potential donors, please click “help now” and complete the clinician form.

The experimental treatment is approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to be used on an emergency basis. People who recover from the Coronavirus infection have developed antibodies to the virus that remain in the plasma portion of their blood. Transfusing the plasma that contains the antibodies into a person still fighting the virus can provide a boost to the patient’s immune system and potentially help them recover.

By following approved FDA guidance, OSHA safety standards and the very latest scientific evidence suggesting this could save lives, we’re looking to make rapid progress through approved research and specially FDA emergency-authorized use to fight against COVID-19. The Central California Blood Center is working closely with Cerus Corporation, the Fresno County Department of Health and local hospitals to identify people who have recovered from COVID-19 to be potential donors. Together with Cerus, the Central California Blood Center worked quickly to implement the new protocols to meet the FDA criteria for safety and efficacy required for pathogen-reduced COVID-19 convalescent plasma, and is ready to begin collecting plasma from qualified donors immediately.

These potential donors will need to meet all standard FDA blood donation requirements, plus pass additional FDA criteria, including:

  • COVID-19 convalescent plasma must only be collected from recovered individuals if they are eligible to donate blood
  • Required testing must be performed and the donation must be found suitable
  • Prior diagnosis of COVID-19 documented by a laboratory test
  • Complete resolution of symptoms throughout at least 28 days prior to donation.
  • As with all transfusions, the donor and the patient will need to have compatible blood types.
  • Physicians wanting this product as it becomes available can join an established investigational protocol, approved by FDA or apply directly to FDA for Emergency Use Authorization.
  • I have recovered from Covid-19.

DONOR ELIGIBILITY FORM

  • I am a physician who is interested in receiving convalescent plasma.

CLICK HERE to register with the Covid-19 Expanded Access Program

  • I am a physician who has already registered with the Covid-19 Expanded Access Program

CLICK HERE to access the Covid-19 Convalescent Plasma Order Form

bag of plasma donation

HAVE MORE QUESTIONS ABOUT THE COVID-19 CRISIS AND ITS IMPACT ON BLOOD DONATIONS? ACCESS OUR FAQ HERE

Are your donor centers still open?

Yes, we are open. As concerns surrounding COVID-19 increase, it is critical to remember that donating blood is safe and essential for our community and the areas we serve.

Do we currently still have a blood shortage?

We are currently doing well with inventory, and can’t thank the community enough. Whole blood does expire within 42 days of collection, so while we are very well stocked now, we do need to start planning for the future. If you would like to become a future hero, schedule your appointment here.

What are you doing to ensure the safety of all donors during this COVID-19 pandemic?

The Central California Blood Center is adhering to all U.S. Center for Disease Control (CDC) measures to ensure the safety and adequacy of our Valley’s blood. We will continue to follow the latest CDC precautions, while monitoring CDC and Fresno County Department of Public Health reports daily.

Our donor centers will continue to operate safely, with the health of our donors as a top priority. People can continue to donate blood, platelets, and plasma as long as:

  • They are well and healthy.
  • Have not traveled to Asia or Europe in the last 28 days.

We are working closely with the local public health department (FCDPH) for updates and will continue to provide Central Valley residents with timely updates surrounding this topic.

Additionally, we have taken extra precautions such as adding to our regular cleaning schedule, increasing sanitation of all surfaces, providing masks for donors and staff as well as measuring donor and staff temperatures before anyone enters any of our buildings.

Blood centers follow appropriate infection control standards of donor rooms and mobile buses, which include sanitation of donor waiting rooms and donation chairs.

Are you testing the blood for COVID-19?

There is no known risk of transmission of COVID-19 through the blood donation process or from blood transfusions so we do not test donated blood for COVID-19.

I heard you’re the first blood center in the U.S. to start producing pathogen reduced plasma for COVID-19 survivors. What’s that about?

Yes, this is true. We are proud to announce that we are the first blood center in the United States to produce pathogen-reduced plasma from patients who have successfully recovered from the Coronavirus in order to provide local and national hospitals with pathogen-reduced, convalescent plasma for patients currently battling the life-threatening COVID-19 virus.

The experimental treatment is approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to be used on an emergency basis. People who recover from the Coronavirus infection have developed antibodies to the virus that remain in the plasma portion of their blood. Transfusing the plasma that contains the antibodies into a person still fighting the virus can provide a boost to the patient’s immune system and potentially help them recover.

For those that have tested positive for COVID-19 and are now donating plasma towards research, what are you doing to ensure the safety of other donors in the centers?

We are only accepting donors that meet a very strict criteria intended to consider the safety of all parties involved. These criteria include a complete resolution of symptoms throughout at least 14 days prior to donation and having a negative test for the virus post-recovery. Plasma donations will only occur through private donor hours for this initiative, outside of regular hours open to the community.

For those that have tested positive for COVID-19 and are now donating plasma towards research, where is their plasma donation going?

These donations are going to individuals who are being treated for COVID-19, in efforts to boost the patient’s immune system as they fight the virus. Local hospitals and medical professionals should connect with the Fresno County Department of Public Health with any referrals to safe donors or access the forms below to determine eligibility. Physicians wanting this product as it becomes available can join an established investigational protocol, approved by FDA or apply directly to FDA for Emergency Use Authorization.

  • I have recovered from Covid-19

DONOR ELIGIBILITY FORM

  • I am a physician who is interested in receiving convalescent plasma

CLICK HERE to register with the Covid-19 Expanded Access Program

  • I am a physician who has already registered with the Covid-19 Expanded Access Program

CLICK HERE to access the Covid-19 Convalescent Plasma Order Form