American Red Cross announces it will soon offer antibody tests

Red Cross to offer antibody tests

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - The Red Cross says they’ll soon offer antibody tests in an effort to save lives during this pandemic.

Since the state has allowed for elective surgeries to pick back up, the Red Cross said they’re seeing a 30 percent increase in the demand for blood and that’s where you come in. The American Red Cross is in an urgent need for blood right now, and they said donating blood is safe.

Starting June 15th, the Red Cross will offer antibody testing. More details are set to come regarding the scheduling and facilities involved.

Another important need right now is for African American blood donors to make an appointment in order to help patients battling sickle cell disease.

“We haven’t seen as good of a turn out from our minority donors, so with sickle cell anemia being an issue, typically those traits come from African-American donors. So we need, and are reaching out to African-American communities to ask them to come out,” said Annette Rowland with the Red Cross.

Back in April, the Red Cross was asking people who had fully recovered from COVID-19 to donate their plasma.

So far, we're told that’s going well, but they've made a few changes.

Now, you have to have had a confirmed positive case of COVID-19 before you can donate plasma.

That’s because about a third of donors have come in thinking they had the virus, but it turned out they didn’t.

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