If you've never donated blood, you should strongly consider it. It's saves a lot of lives and it's extra important if you're healthy that you donate right now.

And now donated blood is being tested. The Blood Center will test all successfully donated blood for COVID-19 antibodies to see if donors can help others diagnosed with coronavirus by donating "convalescent plasma".

Convalescent plasma is collected from recovered patients and administered to people hospitalized with COVID-19.

WIFR details -

Donors must meet the requirements to donate blood by being in general good health and weigh at least 110 pounds, according to the RRVBC.

The antibody test will be included with other standard tests performed on donated blood. However, testing will not be done for those who are deferred or on donated blood that was donated before Aug. 31.

The Blood Center's Director of Operations details -

We are happy to begin antibody testing, as we hope it will help us identify potential convalescent plasma donors. We encourage individuals to schedule an appointment at one of our donor centers or a blood drive. If your antibody test comes back positive, you can help more local people by also donating convalescent plasma for someone hospitalized with COVID-19.

So how do you donate? Appointments are encouraged, but walk-ins will be welcomed as long as donor centers and blood drives can comply with social distancing requirements. Schedule a donation online, on the myRRVBC app or by calling 815-965-8751.

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