The Blood Connection Provides Free COVID-19 Antibody Testing to All Blood Donors
GREENVILLE, SOUTH CAROLINA (May 11, 2020) – 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.
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. If anyone would like to host a blood drive in their community, business, church, etc. please contact The Blood Connection.