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OUR VIEW: Save a life, give blood or plasma

Recovering COVID-19 patients can donate their plasma to help those currently fighting and suffering from the virus. 

LifeSouth Community Blood Center will host a blood and plasma drive at St. Peter’s Catholic Church on Wednesday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. 

The need for blood is critical and the supply is severely low. Mark Ward, blood bank supervisor at WellStar West Georgia Health, said there is a critical need for O negative blood right now. All blood types are encouraged for the drive, but O negative is especially low and is needed the most. 

Giving blood typically takes less than 30 minutes but could save up to three lives. LifeSouth announced the first draw of convalescent plasma on April 17 and will also be able to draw convalescent plasma at this blood drive. 

“Previous COVID-19 patients can give just plasma and not blood, which is what is needed for the antibodies,” said Ellen Eisenbarth, who is helping plan the drive. “Those antibodies are just like the flu shot. You have that time where you build an antibody, and you’re able to fight off the attack of the virus. By giving the plasma, someone will be able to fight off the virus more effectively.”

We hope those who have fought the coronavirus, and have recovered feel strong enough to come to this drive to donate their plasma to potentially help someone else fighting the virus.  The post-recovery plasma provides one more tool that doctors can use to combat COVID-19. All the blood will stay local as well. 

Every ounce of blood is crucial to those who need it in the hospital. 

We hope you take the time Wednesday to go and potentially save a few lives.