TACOMA, Wash.April 29, 2020 — Washington was the first epicenter of the coronavirus outbreak in the U.S., and Pierce County was among the earliest and hardest hit. Now it’s at the forefront of the race for new treatments and vaccines, thanks in part to the work of Cascade Regional Blood Services.

Treatments depend on research of blood plasma donations from people who’ve recovered from COVID-19. The FDA is coordinating a national effort along with America’s Blood Centers to develop these treatments.

Convalescent COVID-19 plasma is not only being studied for its antibodies—the plasma itself may be administered as an emergency treatment for patients critically ill with the disease. The topic of convalescent blood plasma is highly likely to trend in coming weeks and months. Because our region was the earliest and hardest hit, we have the greatest number of recovered patients who can and are contributing.

In Pierce and South King Counties, Cascade Regional Blood Services (CRBS) is coordinating the local effort to collect convalescent plasma, which is then distributed through MultiCare hospitals and a national network called BioLinked to provide blood products for treatments and research.

Recovered COVID patients such as Alissa from Enumclaw have marched right back in to a donation center. “I donated plasma because I want to help others who are suffering with COVID-19. If my antibodies are the way I can pay it forward, I’m eager to take part. The biggest lesson in all of this for me is that even the hardest trials can become positive and meaningful when seen through a lens of potentially helping someone else.”

Donating blood and plasma is absolutely safe. If you or someone you know has tested positive for COVID-19 and has recovered, visit crbs.net or contact 1-800-24-BLOOD for more information on how to donate.

About Cascade Regional Blood Services
Cascade Regional Blood Services is a not-for-profit 501(c)3 independent blood center serving community hospitals and clinics in Western Washington since 1946. CRBS provides blood products, therapeutic apheresis services, and support to pharmaceutical partners. With a dedicated volunteer donor base, CRBS conducts over 1,000 blood drives a year and has three donor center locations, including a laboratory in their Tacoma headquarters.  For more than 25 years, research companies have looked to CRBS to support their individual and IRB endeavors through recruitment and specialized collections.  For more information, visit https://www.crbs.net/.

Media Assets
Photo of donor, Alissa: https://www.crbs.net/crbs_ccp_alissa/
Cascade Regional Blood Services logo: https://www.crbs.net/crbs-logo/