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Published on Oct 8, 2018
Many patients with rare and genetic disorders are relying on YOU. That's because blood contains plasma, a key ingredient in the treatments they need to survive...and the only way to get source plasma is from healthy donors. Plasma is the protein-rich, gold-colored liquid portion of blood that remains after red blood cells, white blood cells, platelets and other cellular components are removed. It all starts when a donor visits one of the more than 700 source plasma donation centers in North America and Europe. First, the donor will check in at reception, presenting a government issued ID with proof of current address. The donor then takes a few minutes to complete a health history questionnaire. Then, they must pass a health screening prior to each donation before being able to donate. Source plasma donors in the United States and some European countries are given a modest compensation for their time and travel. Plasma, which is used to make lifesaving plasma protein therapies, is collected through a process known as plasmapheresis.During this process, an automated device is used to separate the plasma from the blood. Once the plasma is collected, red blood cells and other components are returned to the donor. After the plasma is collected, it is tested for suitability for further manufacture, frozen, and then held for 60 days prior to pooling. It must pass these rigorous steps to be pooled with other plasma donations. Each plasma pool is further tested before the protein extraction process begins. During this process, lifesaving proteins are extracted from the plasma. The separated, specific proteins are purified and adjusted for optimal dosage before becoming the finished therapeutic product. Each source plasma donation is tracked the entire time--from the donation all the way to the final therapy. It is essential that healthy people donate plasma because every year it takes approximately 130 plasma donations to treat one person with a primary immune deficiency… 900 donations to treat one person with alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency…and 1200 donations to treat one person with hemophilia. Plasma donation is a process that saves lives. And it’s all starts with YOU. Thank you, plasma donors! To learn more and to find the nearest source plasma donation center, please visit www.donatingplasma.org, and to learn how source plasma makes a difference by saving and improving the lives of people with rare, genetic, and chronic diseases, please visit www.howisyourday.org.