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BARDA and American Red Cross collaborate on convalescent plasma for therapeutic use in COVID-19 infected patients

BARDA Response

BARDA and the American Red Cross (ARC) are collaborating on systems and procedures to recruit donors who have recovered from COVID-19. Through this collaboration the ARC will prepare procedures for the collection of plasma for investigational use in treating patients infected with COVID-19.

Convalescent plasma has potential to be one of the first therapeutics in use on the front lines. Convalescent plasma is collected from patients who have recovered from COVID-19 and contains antibodies of SARS-CoV-2 (the virus that causes COVID-19).

The use of convalescent plasma has been studied in outbreaks of other respiratory infections, including the 2009-2010 H1N1 influenza virus pandemic, 2003 SARS-CoV-1 epidemic, and the 2012 MERS-CoV epidemic. Although preliminary studies completed in China are promising, convalescent plasma has not been shown to be effective in every disease studied.

BARDA and the ARC are working closely with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) which is coordinating across the U.S. government for a unified effort to collect convalescent plasma for use as a treatment for COVID-19 patients and in clinical trials.

 

About the American Red Cross:

The following information is provided by American Red Cross website and does not indicate endorsement by the federal government of the organization or its products.

The American Red Cross prevents and alleviates human suffering in the face of emergencies by mobilizing the power of volunteers and the generosity of donors. The American Red Cross, through its strong network of volunteers, donors and partners, is always there in times of need. They aspire to turn compassion into action so that:

  • all people affected by disaster across the country and around the world receive care, shelter and hope;
  • our communities are ready and prepared for disasters;
  • everyone in our country has access to safe, lifesaving blood and blood products;
  • all members of our armed services and their families find support and comfort whenever needed; and
  • in an emergency, there are always trained individuals nearby, ready to use their Red Cross skills to save lives.

To learn more about the American Red Cross efforts in collecting convalescent plasma for treatment of COVID-19 patients visit: https://www.redcross.org/about-us/news-and-events/press-release/2020/collecting-convalescent-plasma-for-treatment-of-covid-19.html.

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