The Blood Connection (TBC), a local non-profit, community blood center is offering COVID-19 antibody testing to all donors at no cost, beginning Monday, May 11. The test, which will provide blood donors with a positive or negative result, will be included in the normal panel of testing that is done to all blood that is collected by the organization.
“After an overwhelming, positive response from our donors through a poll, The Blood Connection is proud to offer this test to our donors at no cost,” said Delisa English, President & CEO of TBC.
TBC wants to ensure that all donors are aware that this is not a diagnostic test for COVID-19 infection. The FDA and the CDC have both said that a positive antibody test result does not prove the individual has immunity to the virus and that research of the antibodies is still being conducted.
“We are providing this test as a service to our donors. As a respiratory virus, there is no evidence of COVID-19 transmission through blood donation or transfusion,” says Dr. Robert Rainer, Medical Director for TBC.
TBC will be offering this testing to donors at all donation centers and blood mobiles. Although this is being made available to all donors, anyone may opt out of the testing within 24 hours of donation. Once the individual has donated with TBC, the organization will make results available to the donor within 7 business days by means of electronic portal. This testing is only available to blood donors and a complete donation must be made in order to be tested. Individual testing is not available to those who are unwilling or unable to donate.
All donors must meet certain criteria in order to be eligible to donate. Donors must be 17 years of age or older, weight at least 110 pounds and be feeling healthy and well in order to donate.
People who are 16 years old may donate with a parental consent form. Please visit thebloodconnection.org/donors for more information on eligibility to donate blood.
If donors would like to have the COVID-19 Antibody Test, they are encouraged to make an appointment to donate blood with The Blood Connection, find a drive nearest them by visiting thebloodconnection.org/donate-blood. If anyone would like to host a blood drive in their community, business, church, etc. please visit thebloodconnection.org/host-a-drive.
About The Blood Connection
Founded in Greenville, SC, The Blood Connection has been committed to saving lives since 1962. TBC is an independently managed, not-for-profit, community blood center that provides blood products to more than 70 hospitals within Georgia, South Carolina, and North Carolina. Recognized by the U.S. Congress for its dedication to disaster preparedness and the community, TBC works diligently to collect blood from volunteer donors to meet the ever-increasing demand. By keeping collections local, TBC serves hundreds of thousands of patients a year in its communities. TBC is licensed and regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. For more information, visit thebloodconnection.org.
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