FLORENCE, S.C. (WMBF) - The Blood Connection Community Blood Center and MUSC Health Florence collected some much-needed blood and plasma donations on Thursday for local hospitals.
MUSC Florence Director of Surgical Services, Melissa Demars, said that while she understands people are scared to get out during the pandemic, blood donations are still needed for everyday emergencies.
“Just because we have COVID pandemic, doesn’t mean we don’t need blood donations to save lives,” said Demars.
The blood drive also included free COVID-19 antibody testing for donors.
Demars said knowing you have antibodies for COVID-19 is important because it gives you the ability to donate plasma to others fighting the virus.
“Well, way beyond the benefit of the blood, the plasma donation of someone who has had COVID positive results and has recovered. They can help another COVID positive patient recover at the same time. It’s a great thing and great way to give back,” said Demars.
Several healthcare workers chose to give back.
The workers who donated plasma are also COVID-19 survivors. They wanted to help other coronavirus patients.
Nursing for Inpatient Rehab Director Michelle Turner survived COVID-19 and felt like this was the best way to give back to the community.
“You know someone else who may be suffering worse than I did. I think we all know people who are suffering from it. Those who have it or have family members who have it, to give back and maybe make their course a little bit better,” said Turner.
As a healthcare worker, Turner believes it’s her responsibility to help.
“Just to help with the healthcare in general with our community. it’s growing rapidly, unfortunately, in this area and just to provide some sort of benefit to our community by giving plasma to someone who is affected by the COVID,” said Turner.
All of the donations collected on Thursday will stay in Florence.
According to the Blood Connection, one full blood donation has the ability to save up to three lives.