Blood donors will now be tested for antibodies from a previous COVID-19 infection at Versiti locations.
Versiti Blood Center of Wisconsin started performing the SARS CoV-2 antibody test on all blood donations starting Aug. 17. The antibody test shows if the donor has had a prior COVID-19 infection and does not say if a donor is currently infected.
Versiti will perform the antibody test on all donations at its blood drives and donor centers. Donors who have antibodies to the virus may also be able to donate their plasma to aid in treatment for coronavirus patients.
Blood donors to the Red Cross are also tested for COVID-19 antibodies.
Versiti Blood Center of Wisconsin has said that it has a need for plasma donations to help treat current coronavirus patients.
“As the number of cases of COVID-19 continue to increase, so does the demand for convalescent plasma,” said Thomas Abshire, Versiti’s chief medical officer in a news release.
“We saw tremendous initial support from patients who recovered from the infection. We have seen a drop in donations over the past few weeks. Now is a critically important time for those who have recovered from the infection to donate and support COVID patients in need. The donation process is safe and could help save lives.”