Another benefit to giving:

American Red Cross offers COVID-19 antibody testing to blood donors

by Marianne Gasaway

Giving blood has always been about making a difference in the lives of others.  Now, the American Red Cross is offering an additional health service to its donors.

For a limited time, all blood, platelet and plasma donations will be tested for COVID-19 antibodies.  The free testing may provide critical insight into whether donors may have possibly been exposed to this coronavirus.

“We recognize that individuals and public health organizations desire more information about COVID-19, and as an organization dedicated to helping others, the Red Cross is fortunate to be able to step up to help during this pandemic,” said Laura McGuire, Communications manager for the organization.

The COVID-19 antibody test is authorized by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and may indicate if the donor’s immune system has produced antibodies to the coronavirus, regardless of whether they developed symptoms.  Red Cross donors can expect to receive the results of their antibody test within seven to 10 days through the Red Cross Blood Donor App or on its donor portal at

The Red Cross stresses that it is not testing donors to diagnose illness, including COVID-19.

“If you feel unwell for any reason, please postpone your donation,” said McGuire.  “Individuals who believe they may be ill with COVID-19 should not present to donate until they are symptom free for 14 days and feeling well and healthy.”

The Red Cross has been offering the test for COVID-10 antibodies since June 15 and it was part of

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