KESQ: Desert Care Network employee donates plasma after recovering from coronavirus
By: Dani Romero
Lifestream Blood Bank in La Quinta collected their first “convalescent plasma” donation on Saturday from a recovered coronavirus patient, who wants to help other patients recover from coronavirus.
“A little nervous because its something I haven’t done before,” said Angie Hoyt. “Of course I have given regular blood but I have never done plasma.”
Angie Hoyt, an employee of Desert Care Network, is the first coronavirus positive plasma donor in the Coachella Valley.
Although Hoyt was asymptomatic, as a hospital employee, she was able to be tested and results came back positive for coronavirus at the end of March.
After being quarantined for 14 days, Hoyt took two more tests provided by the hospital, which came back negative.
Hoyt then learned about Lifestream’s “convalescent plasma” donor program through colleagues.
“I actually volunteered,” said Hoyt. “If there is something I can do, I would love to be able to give back.”
Hoyt said the blood bank got back to her immediately so she quickly started preparing to donate.
“I had some nice big steak and spinach for dinner thinking that would help with my iron levels,” said Hoyt. “Which were great by the way so that worked.”
Mayor of La Quinta and lifelong friend of Hoyt Linda Evans came in for support.
“Its exciting to see Angie step up to plate and be a team player,” said Evans.
Lifestream Blood Bank officials told News Channel 3; since Angie Hoyt was a referred donor from Desert Care Network, her plasma will be given to them and could be used to treat 3 to 4 critically ill coronavirus patients.
“We’re excited about the fact that patients who have recovered from COVID-19 infection actually develop antibodies,”said Rick Axelrod. “We can collect the plasma from those people and have that transfused to sick patients.”
CEO of Lifestream Blood Bank Rick Axelrod said 12 people have applied to become donors since the launch of the program this week and hopes more come forward to help hospitals in our county.
Medical experts have said plasma has not been fully proven to be effective with coronavirus patients.“There’s been small little trials that have been done that are showing that this could be helpful in patients who are sick,” said Axelrod.
For more information about donating plasma through Lifestream Blood Bank. Click Here.