NEW LEXINGTON — As civilization continues to live on in Ohio, so do the efforts to keep testing citizens for coronavirus (COVID-19) in the state. The American Red Cross recently announced information regarding testing for blood donations.

According to information published by the American Red Cross, the organization is going to be testing all blood, platelet and plasma donations for COVID-19 antibodies.

There are several locations throughout the state that will be dedicated for donation antibody testing.{p dir=”ltr”}There are two scheduled locations set to test donations in Perry County. On June 26, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., antibody testing will be conducted at the Senior Citizen Center located at 520 1st St. in the Village of New Lexington. On June 30, from 2 to 7 p.m., antibody testing for donors will be conducted at the Crooksville Volunteer Fire Department located at 22 China Street in the Village of Crooksville.

The move was announced because it will aim to provide donors with insight into whether they have been exposed to the worldwide virus or not. Additionally, efforts are being made for the Red Cross to continue its work providing hospitals with much needed supplies of blood products.

The COVID-19 antibodies testing began operations on June 15 and will go on throughout the summer.

The Red Cross, in its announcement, described the need for blood as urgent in order to prevent a summer shortage. Those who decide to give blood in the month of June will be given a $5 gift card to Amazon.

According to the American Red Cross, antibody testing will provide vital information in order to identify if a donor’s immune system has a solid defense against COVID-19, regardless if they have developed symptoms.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), antibody tests are conducted in order to check an individual’s blood for past infections. In the current climate, testing can show if an individual had a previous infection of COVID-19.

The CDC also explains that antibodies are essential proteins that assist in combating off various infections. Antibodies are essential because they typically provide protection against the virus or illness returning. They are also specific to each disease and illness.

The CDC continues to explain that depending on when someone is infected and conducts the test, it may not be able to identify antibodies in someone with a current infection. Antibody tests not used to diagnose someone with an illness such as COVID-19. In order for there to be a diagnosis, a viral test must be conducted.

The Red Cross also announced that donations will be tested using samples pulled at the time of the initial donation and will be sent to a testing laboratory where it will be processed through infectious disease testing.

The Red Cross also reiterated that a positive antibody test doe not confirm infection or immunity from COVID-19.

COVID-19 antibody testing results for those who undergo the process will have their results ready within seven to 10 days. Results can be found on the Blood Donor App or donor portal at redcrossblood.org.

The Red Cross also stated that the test has been authorized for emergency usage by the United States Food and Drug Administration.

Dr. Erin Goodhue, executive medical director of direct patient care with Red Cross Biomedical Services, stated that if an individual is feeling “healthy and well” they should schedule an appointment as a donation could help save lives while also learning about personal COVID-19 exposure.

“As an organization dedicated to helping others, the Red Cross is pleased to provide more information about COVID-19 to our valued donors,” Dr. Goodhue said.

The Red Cross is not testing donors to diagnose illness. Instead, those individuals may look towards getting through a process known as diagnostic testing.

According to the American Red Cross, blood is needed everyday for various medical procedures and emergency situations. The organization also highlighted that it supports patients at nearly 3,000 hospitals nationwide and 40 hospitals in central Ohio.

The Red Cross also advises that local community members are to maintain the health and safety of those interacting or around them. Individuals who are not well or do not feel well would postpone their donations until it is safe to do so.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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