Lifeline offers free antibody testing to blood donors
JACKSON, Tenn. — A local blood center is offering a way for people who have recovered from COVID-19 to help those currently battling the virus.
“This test is going to assess rather or not your immune system has responded to the infection or not,” said Lifeline Blood Services Public Relations and Fundraising Coordinator Cherie Parker. “And if it has, then you will have that antibody.”
The fight doesn’t stop there. Parker says if people are recovered from COVID-19 and are symptom free for at least 14 days, you may qualify to be a convalescent plasma donor.
“Because you had COVID-19, your plasma product would contain the antibodies that would be special to help treat patients who currently have severe cases of COVID-19,” Parker said.
Following the advice of local and state leaders, there are regulations in place to help keep patrons and employees safe.
“We are all wearing masks and we have protocols in place. Visitors, staff and donors must have their temperatures checked when they come in the building. We are cleaning surfaces extra times a day,” Parker said.
Health officials say antibody testing is a way for neighbors to help neighbors during this pandemic.
“It’s a scary time, but the scariest thing for us as we see everyday, is that if people quit giving it will not be there when patients need it,” Parker said.
Lifeline Blood Services does not test to diagnose illnesses, including COVID-19.