April 13, 2020

Recovered COVID-19 patients encouraged to donate plasma to treat current patients

Media Contact:
Lisa Cox
Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services


JEFFERSON CITY, MO – The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS) is encouraging people who are fully recovered from COVID-19 to donate plasma, with the aim of helping current COVID-19 patients.

Historically, convalescent plasma has been used to prevent or treat new viral diseases, when other treatments or vaccines were not available. People who have fully recovered from COVID-19 have antibodies in their plasma that have the potential to work against the virus. The plasma obtained from the blood of people who recovered from COVID-19 (convalescent plasma) is being evaluated as treatment for hospitalized patients with serious or immediately life-threatening COVID-19 infections, or those judged by a healthcare provider to be at high risk of progression to severe or life-threatening disease. Blood specimens may also be used to better understand patients’ immune responses to COVID-19 to assist development of new therapies and vaccines.

Those who are fully recovered from a verified coronavirus (COVID-19) diagnosis, can contact the health care institution in their area to be evaluated for eligibility. Eligible candidates are those who:

  • Are over the age of 18 years.
  • Are not pregnant.
  • Have had a previous positive COVID-19 test.
  • Have been free from COVID-19 symptoms for at least 14 days.

These are unpaid, voluntary donations.

“Recently, I was on part of a virtual town hall regarding COVID-19, and a participant exemplified the spirit of so many Missourians when he stated that he wanted to help,” said Dr. Randall Williams, director of DHSS. “It turns out that he has recovered from COVID-19 and wants to donate his plasma to help those who are severely ill. We greatly appreciate the generosity he’s shown and of all those who have been fortunate to recover and choose to help others do the same.”

Interested candidates are encouraged to reach out to the nearest participating provider for instructions. More partners are expected to be added to this project in the coming days and weeks.

  • St. Louis, Washington University School of Medicine
    IDCRU@wustl.edu, 314-454-0058

More information can be found at the National COVID-19 Convalescent Plasma Project website or the American Association of Blood Banks website.



Past Missouri COVID-19 news releases

About the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services: The department seeks to be the leader in protecting health and keeping people safe. More information about DHSS can be found at http://health.mo.gov or find us on Facebook and Twitter @HealthyLivingMo