UCF medical student plans to donate plasma after COVID-19 diagnosis

Plasma used to help treat coronavirus patients

ORLANDO, Fla. – A medical student at the University of Central Florida said that he wants to do his part after being diagnosed with COVID-19.

Kevin Petersen, a third year medical student, said he hopes he can help others currently struggling with the virus by donating his plasma.

“Maybe I could help cure somebody else, or maybe find another sort of treatment in the future," Petersen said.

Petersen, who is also the UCF Medical School class president, said that about a month ago he came down with a fever and got tested for COVID-19. The test came back positive.

“I didn’t actually get the results back until Monday, so this was four days after I got tested, and by then I was actually already starting to improve," Petersen said.

Petersen said that while at home during his recovery, he called OneBlood and set up an appointment to donate his plasma after he no longer tested positive.

“As a medical student, the first thing that I wanted to do was help out in any way I could. And unfortunately, right now medical students aren’t in clinical rotations across the nation, so for me, the one way I could help is donating plasma," he said.

OneBlood said that it has received hundreds of plasma donations from recovered COVID-19 patients within the five-state region in which it operates.

The intent is to transfer the antibodies from a recovered patient to someone currently struggling with the virus.

“Within a few days, as soon as this process, can be about two days or so, it’s matched up with someone in the hospital fighting for their lives," said Pat Michaels with OneBlood.

OneBlood said that it will continue to accept plasma donations from recovered COVID-19 patients as long as there is a need.

Recovered COVID-19 patients who are interested in donating their plasma can click here to go through OneBlood’s pre-registration process.

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