CBC now testing all blood donations for coronavirus antibodies

Starting today, the Community Blood Center is testing all blood donations for COVID-19 antibodies and will continue to provide free testing through the end of the year.

Antibody testing does not determine if someone has an active case of coronavirus. Instead, it indicates a person’s exposure to the virus. It is not considered proof of immunity.

By testing all blood donations for COVID-19 antibodies, it will help show how the virus and spreading, as well as identify people who are eligible to donate convalescent plasma.

The plasma is being used to help treat critically ill coronavirus patients. The demand for COVID-19 convalescent plasma is high as cases have continued to surge over the last month and amid concerns that the virus will continue to spread throughout the holidays and winter.

“Identifying donors with the antibodies will help us build our supply of convalescent plasma and give area hospitals the ability to treat COVID-19 patients for many months to come,” said CBC Medical Director Dr. James Alexander.

Testing for antibodies could also help local heath officials fight the virus and determine how much of the population has been infected.

CBC will test all blood, platelet and plasma donations for coronavirus antibodies. The organization will follow up with a supplemental test for those who qualify to help identify donors who could be convalescent plasma donors. For more information, visit http://www.givingblood.org/.

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