Samples of donated blood being used to test for COVID-19 antibody

Local News

BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) – Blood centers are in need of blood but now they’re changing the way blood is collected and distributed.

Amid Covid-19, blood centers are testing donations for the Covid-19 antibody.

Once blood is drawn, three small vials are sent off to a lab.

There, the the blood is tested and given a positive or negative result for the antibody.

After the samples’ completion, donors could view the results. If a donor’s blood has the antibody, they will be contacted and asked if they would be willing to donate convalescent plasma for someone who’s seeking Covid-19 treatment.

Adam Fontenot with Vitalant says, “the blood samples are not a way to get a COVID-19 test which has been the common misconception.”

“We have to educate them going in and say, it’s not really a Covid test but it will detect the presence of the antibodies in your blood and in your plasma” said Fontenot.

60 percent of blood donations come from blood drives at schools, churches, businesses and colleges.

Since the pandemic began, blood centers have been forced to cancel those drives.

Although the drives have halted, the demand is still there leading to changes on how and when blood is collected.

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