LAWTON, Okla. (TNN) - As ICU beds and COVID-19 units start to reach capacity across Oklahoma. The Oklahoma Blood Institute is in need of convalescent plasma to help those patients.
Without a vaccine, convalescent plasma has been the main go to treatment for the Coronavirus.
The quicker the plasma donation, the quicker OBI can distribute the units to Covid-19 patients to boost their immune systems, keep them out of the ICU, and off ventilators.
“And it comes from folks who have had the disease that have to step up and for the next in line who has got the disease," Oklahoma Blood Institute CEO Dr. John Armitage said.
Dr. Armitage said donors must be healthy and symptom free to donate plasma.
They can also donate at least once a week for up to three months.
“One donor can give up to four units that can be used to transfuse to patients. That’s a huge multiplier. It’s a great way that one gift can change the life’s of one four patients, maybe help four people, save their life’s or get them home quicker,” Dr. Armitage said.
Right now, OBI has about three-days worth of plasma and is losing ground because they are sending out more than they are getting in.
“We’re really in a deficit and we’re going to be down in the next week or two to maybe a one day supply and that’s too tight. At that point you have to start rationing it, say now you can’t have it until tomorrow and that’s a delay,” Dr. Armitage said.
Dr. Armitage said any delays will allow the virus to do more damage than it already has.