Convalescent plasma in very low supply across the Upstate

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GREENVILLE, S.C. (WSPA)–Blood donations have been a top priority throughout the pandemic. Now, the Upstate’s exclusive blood provider says its supply of convalescent plasma is depleted.

For some who have been hospitalized by COVID-19, treatment with convalescent plasma has made a huge difference. And for Dr. Howland Crosswell, it’s become a family affair.

“If she’s donated seven times that’s almost 30 patients that she has potentially had an impact on,” he said.

His daughter, Annabel Crosswell, has now donated plasma seven times.

“My blood can help save someone’s life,” Annabel said.

She had coronavirus back in June, around the same time her dad was helping to bring the treatment to the upstate.

“The ability to get access earlier access to convalescent plasma then we otherwise would have,” Dr. Crosswell said.

Dr. Crosswell said one donation of plasma can help up to four patients. But, the Blood Connection’s supply of plasma is extremely low.

“We need 800 blood donations a day to sustain our hospitals and that’s without the convalescent plasma component,” Allie Van Dyke, with the Blood Connection, said.

“The goal is to have a healthy stockpile of this product and this is just not happening right now,” Van Dyke said.

February is one of the toughest months for donations, causing added stress on hospitals too.

“They want to put in an order with us and know that that order is going to come back as soon as they need it when they need it,” Van Dyke said.

Dr. Crosswell asks those who can donate to think about their loved ones.

“You would want them to have every option possible and that includes convalescent plasma in the right setting for the right individual,” he said.

You can contact the Blood Connection to set up an appointment to donate plasma.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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