The American Red Cross said Monday it is testing all blood, platelet and plasma donations for COVID-19 antibodies through the summer months.
The FDA-authorized antibody test can indicate if a donor's immune system has produced antibodies to the virus regardless of whether a person developed symptoms, spokesperson Christine Welch said. A positive antibody test result does not confirm someone had the infection or immunity.
The Red Cross is urging people to donate blood products because hospitals have resumed surgeries and treatments requiring blood products.
Donors would receive their antibody test results in 7 to 10 days.
“As an organization dedicated to helping others, the Red Cross is pleased to provide more information about COVID-19 to our valued donors,” said Dr. Erin Goodhue, an executive medical director with the Red Cross Biomedical Services.
Every person who donates in the month of June will also receive a $5 Amazon.com gift card via email, the organization said.
Donation appointments can be made by visiting their website, calling 800-RED CROSS (800-733-2767), or using their app. Donation centers also require temperature checks and face coverings for donors and staff.
The San Diego Blood Bank (SDBB) was also asking the public to consider donating blood amid its current critically low supply.