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Rep. McAdams to give second plasma donation for COVID-19 research

May 20, 2020, 10:05 AM
FILE: Ben McAdams, D-Utah, speaks to the KSL/Deseret News editorial boards in September 2019. McAdams will give a plasma donation to research for an effective COVID-19 treatment -- his second donation since being testing positive in March.

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah — Rep. Ben McAdams, D-Utah, will join doctors from ARUP laboratories and the University of Utah Health to donate plasma, contributing to research on finding an effective treatment for COVID-19.

This is his second plasma donation since recovering from the disease. 

How a plasma donation could help

Researchers plan to collect plasma — the liquid part that can be collected from disease survivors — from fully recovered patients in an effort to treat those currently infected. The plasma of fully-recovered patients should contain antibodies that can attack the virus. Those antibodies may hold the key to an effective treatment for those with serious or life-threatening conditions. 

“If my experience can somehow play a small part in helping relieve suffering for other patients with COVID-19, I’m glad to participate,” McAdams said in a statement. “The dedicated scientists at ARUP and the University of Utah Medical Center are doing cutting-edge research that the global medical community desperately needs due to a new virus that has sickened millions.”

McAdams tested positive for the coronavirus in March. He was hospitalized shortly after, reporting severe shortness of breath. 

Who can donate?

Anyone who has been deemed “fully recovered” from COVID-19 can donate their plasma — if they meet the following requirements: 

  • At least 17 years old and a minimum weight of 110 lbs. 
  • In good health, and generally “feels well.”
  • Had a verified case of COVID-19, but is now symptom-free

You can read more about plasma donations from the Red Cross here. 

He previously donated his plasma in April, after multiple tests cleared him of the virus. McAdams will give his second donation Thursday.


How To Prevent the Spread of COVID-19 Coronavirus

COVID-19 coronavirus spreads person to person. It is a virus that is similar to the common cold and the flu. So, to prevent it from spreading:

  • Wash hands frequently and thoroughly, with soap and water, for at least 20 seconds.
  • Don’t touch your face.
  • Keep children and those with compromised immune systems away from someone who is coughing or sneezing (in this instance, at least six feet)
  • If there is an outbreak near you, practice social distancing (stay at home, instead of going to the movies, sports events, or other activities.)
  • Get a flu shot.

Local resources

KSL Coronavirus Q&A 

Utah’s Coronavirus Information 

Utah State Board of Education

Utah Hospital Association

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Utah Coronavirus Information Line – 1-800-456-7707

National Resources

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Commonly asked questions, World Health Organization

Cases in the United States

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Rep. McAdams to give second plasma donation for COVID-19 research