NHS Blood and Transplant is now urgently appealing for people in North East London to donate convalescent blood plasma.
If you have had COVID-19 and are now recovered, NHS Blood and Transplant (NHSBT) needs you to come forward to donate now.
The welcome decline in new infections means every potential donor is now even more valuable. Antibody levels are at their highest soon after recovery. A successful trial will enable convalescent plasma to be an additional line of protection during any second wave.
A new, dedicated plasma donation centre for North East London has just opened in Westfield Stratford City.
Gail Miflin, Chief Medical Officer, NHS Blood and Transplant, said: “We need people in North East London to offer to donate now so we are ready to potentially provide an additional line of protection during any second wave.
“The number of new infections has declined greatly which is fantastic news. Fewer people are getting COVID-19. This does mean we need to work harder to recruit new donors and we urgently need as many people as possible who have recovered to donate, to help us make as much progress as possible now.
“We especially need men who have recovered to donate because they have higher antibody levels. Donating plasma is safe and easy and you could save lives.”
Although there is evidence of patient benefit from the use of convalescent plasma, the safety and effectiveness of COVID-19 convalescent plasma transfusions needs to be confirmed by a robust clinical trial. The trial results are expected later this year although dates will depend on the progress of the pandemic.
Plasma donation takes about 45 minutes. Your body usually replaces the plasma you’ve donated in 24-48 hours. Your body also quickly replaces the antibodies. People can donate plasma as often as every two weeks.
If you’ve had coronavirus, please offer to donate by calling or 0300 123 23 23 or visiting the www.nhsbt.nhs.uk website.