The Oklahoma Blood Institute is now seeking COVID-19 survivors to step up and make a special kind of donation at a Pauls Valley event that could help others as they recover from the virus.

It’s called a convalescent plasma drive now scheduled from 10:30 a.m. to 2:15 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 9.

An OBI van accepting donations will be stationed out in front in the area formerly used as the emergency room at Pauls Valley’s closed hospital.

The area is now being used as an urgent care center operated by the Southern Plains Medical Group, which is currently working to get the hospital back open.

Heather Mullens of Southern Plains says is all about getting donations from patients who have already survived the virus.

“This is for people who had COVID-19 but recovered,” Mullens tells the PV Democrat.

“The antibodies from the plasma are used to treat people with active cases of COVID. It’s one of the most effective ways to treat COVID-19 right now.

“If they want to give they have to call and register at least five days before the drive.”

That means those interested in making a donation should call the hotline of 800-308-3924 by Thursday, Sept. 3.

Brandi Jones of the OBI says a quick response by donors is vital as they need to email their test results to as soon as possible. They'll need to provide these things:

1. Documentation of positive test results

2. Name

3. Date of Birth

4. Address

5. Mobile location they want to donate, which in this case is the Southern Plains Pauls Valley Urgent Care and Diagnostic Center.

“We're asking people who want to donate plasma to contact us so early because we must document that they once tested positive for the virus and later had a negative test,” Jones said, adding the hope is to match blood types of donors to the ones most needed.

She adds the plasma has been found to be effective in treatments for those currently recovering from COVID-19.

“It could be very helpful with the recovery time for people being treated for the virus. The recovery time is so much easier and quicker for patients being treated for COVID-19.

“It's the same procedure as giving blood,” she said about the donations. “We'll take the plasma and put the red blood cells back in.”

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