On Monday, May 25th – nearly two months after recovering from COVID-19 – Snoqualmie Mayor Matt Larson was at Bloodworks Northwest in downtown Seattle donating plasma that will be used to treat seriously ill novel coronavirus patients.
Larson first provided blood samples at the University of Washington for multiple COVID-19 vaccine studies. Once his antibodies were verified, he was referred to Bloodworks Northwest for the 840ml plasma donation.
Larson was not told how high his antibody count was, only that it met all the metrics required to qualify for the donation. He added, “It’s quite a detailed testing and screening process.”
According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, “Convalescent plasma is an antibody-rich product made from blood donated by people who have recovered from the disease caused by the virus. Prior experience with respiratory viruses and limited data that have emerged from China suggest that convalescent plasma has the potential to lessen the severity or shorten the length of illness caused by COVID-19.”
Pop-up Blood Donor Center Coming to Snoqualmie
The City of Snoqualmie has also been working with Bloodworks Northwest – which provides about 95% of the blood used by local hospitals – to expand its annual summer community blood drive.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Bloodworks Northwest has altered its typical donation model to a new pop-up donor center, providing a safe donation location for donors and its staff during statewide stay-at-home order.
Blood donations continue to serve a critical role in community health – and even more so during the on-going pandemic.
Since mid-April there has been a pop-up donor center at T-Mobile Field, but the first one on the Eastside will happen in Snoqualmie City Council Chambers (city hall) from June 22nd-June 25th.
During that time city hall will close to the public, with only Bloodworks staff, donors and essential city staff allowed.
Those who wish to donate are required to make an appointment online or call 1-800-398-7888.
“The City has been working with Blood Works since March to host a blood drive. Our commitment was strong to this community health need. When the pop-up donor center model was launched, we secured dates and worked out the details. We are honored to offer the first pop-up site in East King County, ” said Nicole Wiebe, Snoqualmie Events, Marketing and Outreach Coordinator.