A Note to European Plasma Donors on the Spread of Coronavirus
At this time of global concern regarding spread of the novel coronavirus, PPTA wants to thank the millions of committed plasma donors who make lifesaving medicines for rare disease patients a reality and to remind them that donor safety continues to be a top priority for PPTA and its member companies.
We also want current and potential new donors to know that:
- plasma donation continues to be a safe process,
- there have been no blood-borne transmissions of the coronavirus, and
- the need for plasma donations is just as great as ever!
Importance of Plasma Donation
Plasma donations are used to produce medicines that treat people with rare, chronic, life-threatening conditions, such as primary immunodeficiency, hemophilia, certain neurological conditions, genetic lung disease, acute edema, and others. They are also used to treat trauma, burns, and shock. Patients around the world depend on these therapies to live normal lives. At times of national crisis, it is more important than ever to collect the plasma necessary to treat these vulnerable patient populations.
Plasma Donation is Safe
Plasma centers are where healthy members of the local community go to donate plasma and are not doctors’ offices where people seek diagnosis and treatment. Those that are not feeling well, or are at high risk for coronavirus infection, are urged to stay home. See Guidance from European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control.
Plasma centers are:
- clean, well-controlled, supervised establishments;
- subject to national and European quality and safety requirements;
- in many case, are governed by rigorous industry health and safety standards as well.
Additional Safety Steps
Safe plasma collection requires a clean, well-controlled environment. Comprehensive health and safety precautions were already in effect prior to the coronavirus crisis and remain in place.
In response to the coronavirus situation, some centers are taking further steps, such as:
- Hanging posters instructing individuals not to enter the center if they are experiencing symptoms associated with coronavirus or who meet other risk factors defined by authorities (e.g., recent travel to affected areas).
- Enhancing efforts to disinfect surfaces with which donors and center staff come into routine contact.
- Executing strategies for reducing donor waiting time and/or center crowding.
- Implementing new safeguards recommended by leading health authorities, such as the World Health Organization and National Ministries of Health, as they are issued.
For More Information
For additional information about plasma donation and plasma protein therapies, including where to find a donation center near you, please visit www.donatingplasma.org. To learn more about the diseases treated by access to therapies derived from plasma, and to read stories from plasma donors and patients, please visit www.HowIsYourDay.org.
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