Kentucky Blood Center announces antibody testing

PIKEVILLE, Ky. — Kentucky Blood Center is now testing blood donors for COVID-19 antibodies.

Now through Oct. 3, blood donated at blood center locations will be tested to see if it contains the antibodies, unless the donor opts out from the program.

Seven-to-10 days after donating blood, donors can log on to their accounts online to find out their status. If they have the antibodies, they will then be asked if they wish to donate plasma to help in the fight against the coronavirus.

“We are doing this free of charge to all donors, in hopes that we can find donors that have tested positive for antibodies,” said Kaitlyn Zeller, with Kentucky Blood Center. “And we can hopefully get them to come back to our donor centers for plasma donation, so we have that convalescent plasma for our COVID-19 patients.

“Convalescent plasma is used for patients in critical need or in critical condition. The convalescent plasma helps that COVID-19 patient.”

The testing is being performed in addition to any other incentives donors receive.

Only blood collected at donor centers — not mobile units — is eligible for testing.

Because of coronavirus restrictions, donors must schedule an appointment to donate.

To find out more about the program, or to register to donate, visit kybloodcenter.org.