LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – Nearly 300 people have recovered from COVID-19 in Arkansas.
Thursday, for the first time in our state, people who have recovered can donate their plasma for an experimental initiative to treat someone who is severely ill.
A few weeks ago, Ben Floyd from Little Rock did not think he would be donating his plasma at the Arkansas Blood Institute.
He was one of the first in Arkansas to be diagnosed with coronavirus.
“I was very blessed to not have severe symptoms,” Floyd said.
He has since recovered and is donating plasma for an experimental initiative.
“It is a potential life-saving source for those who are in the ICU or who are hospitalized,” UAMS Division Director for Transfusion Medicine Dr. Tina Ipe said.
The antibodies in the so-called “liquid gold” can potentially be used to fight the virus in others.
“This treatment is what we have available to us now. There has to be clinical trials to determine how helpful it is,” Dr. Ipe said.
Floyd hopes with the blood draw, it can give someone else’s loved one the best possible chance at fighting the illness.
“It’s an expression of gratitude,” Floyd said.
He says if you have had COVID-19, or not, there are multiple ways you can help.
“We can all help save lives, people that are staying home and doing social distancing, they’re saving lives. I’m just in a unique position with my antibodies to be able to do some thing a little bit different,” Floyd said.
If you had COVID-19, and have recovered, you may also be able to donate your plasma. To learn who can qualify, visit https://mobile.bio-linked.org/.