For a limited time, the American Red Cross is testing all blood, platelet and plasma donations for COVID-19 antibodies, providing donors insight into whether they have been exposed to this coronavirus.
At the same time, according to a press release sent Monday from the Red Cross, there continues to be an urgent need for blood donations as hospitals resume surgeries and treatments that require blood products.
Several locations in Williamson County will be accepting donations at specific times and days. Testing for antibodies will take place through the end of June.
Antibody testing will indicate if the donor’s immune system has produced antibodies to this coronavirus, regardless of whether they developed symptoms. Donations will be tested using samples pulled at the time of donation and sent to a testing laboratory where they will also undergo routine infectious disease testing. A positive antibody test result does not confirm infection or immunity.
COVID-19 antibody test results will be available within 7-10 days in the Red Cross Blood Donor App or donor portal at RedCrossBlood.org. The test has been authorized for emergency use by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
“As an organization dedicated to helping others, the Red Cross is pleasedto provide more information about COVID-19 to our valued donors,” said Dr. Erin Goodhue, executive medical director of direct patient care with the Red Cross Biomedical Services. “If you are feeling healthy and well, please schedule an appointment to not only help saves lives but also learn about your potential exposure to COVID-19.”
The Red Cross is not testing donors to diagnose illness, referred to as a diagnostic test.
Donation appointments can be made by downloading the free Blood Donor app, visiting RedCrossBlood.org, calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or enabling the Blood Donor Skill on any Alexa Echo device. Thanks to Amazon, all those who come to give June 1-30 will receive a $5 Amazon.com Gift Card via email.
Blood drive safety precautions
To protect the health and safety of Red Cross staff and donors, individuals who do not feel well or who believe they may be ill with COVID-19 should postpone their donation.
Each Red Cross blood drive and donation center follows the highest standards of safety and infection control, and additional precautions — including temperature checks, social distancing and face coverings for donors and staff — have been implemented to help protect the health of all those in attendance.
Donors are asked to schedule an appointment prior to arriving at the drive and are required to wear a face covering or mask while at the drive, in alignment with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention public guidance.
Upcoming blood donation opportunities at Williamson County locations, June 15-30:
Best Buy, 1600 Galleria Blvd. Brentwood, June 30, 12-4 p.m.
Bethel World Outreach Church, 5670 Granny White Pike, Brentwood, June 24, 12-5 p.m.
Brenthaven Cumberland Presbyterian Church, 516 Franklin Road, Brentwood, June 16, 2-7 p.m.
Brentwood United Methodist Church, 309 Franklin Road, Brentwood, June 21, 11:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Church of the Good Shepherd, 1420 Wilson Pike, Brentwood, June 24, 3-7 p.m.
Churchill Mortgage, 1749 Mallory Lane, Suite 100 Brentwood, June 17, 12-5 p.m.
City of Brentwood, Brentwood Library, 8109 Concord Road, Brentwood, June 17, 18, 24, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. each dayt
CoolSprings Galleria, 1800 Galleria Blvd., Franklin, June 17, 12:30-5:30 p.m.
Fifty Forward Martin Center, 8109 Concord Road, Brentwood, June 24, 1-5 p.m.
Franklin Christian Church, 4040 Murfreesboro Road Franklin, June 22, 2-8 p.m.
Franklin Family YMCA, 501 S. Royal Oaks Blvd., Franklin, June 23, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Harpeth Christian Church, 1101 Gardner Drive, Franklin, June 16, 2-6 p.m.
Harpeth Presbyterian Church, 3077 Hillsboro Road, Brentwood, June 16, 2-7 p.m.
Highwood Plaza, 5410 Maryland Way, Brentwood, June 22, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Kroger, 210 Franklin Road, Brentwood, June 23, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Kroger Marketplace, 4726 Traders Way, Thompson’s Station, June 16, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Natchez Trace American Red Cross Chapter, 129 West Fowlkes St, Ste 100, Franklin June 18, 25, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. both days
NHC Place at Cool Springs, 211 Cool Springs Blvd., Franklin, June 29, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Thompson Station Church, 2604 Thompson’s Station Road, Thompson’s Station, June 23, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
About blood donation
All blood types are needed to ensure a reliable supply for patients. A blood donor card or driver’s license or two other forms of identification are required at check-in. Individuals who are 17 years of age in most states (16 with parental consent where allowed by state law), weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors 18 years of age and younger also have to meet certain height and weight requirements.
Blood and platelet donors can save time at their next donation by using RapidPass to complete their pre-donation reading and health history questionnaire online, on the day of their donation, before arriving at the blood drive. To get started, follow the instructions at RedCrossBlood.org/RapidPass or use the Blood Donor App.