Plasma is an important component of blood, and constitutes over half of the total volume. It mostly consists of water, but also contains other constituents such as vitamins, minerals, proteins, hormones, etc. It is an important element that is needed for patients suffering from hemophilia and immune deficiencies, pregnant women, newborn babies, ICU patients, or patients suffering from intensive burn injuries. For this purpose, we require blood plasma donation centers.
The requirements for plasma donation are very similar to those in the case of blood donation. A donor should be physically fit and healthy. He needs to be at least 18 years of age and must weigh more than 110 pounds. He should not suffer from blood-related diseases like hepatitis, AIDS, or cancer. The donation facilities would provide all the other requirements. Plasma has the capability of regenerating very quickly, so you may even donate two times in a week.
Before the donation process, you would need to take an appointment from a certified plasma donation center. The complete process normally takes more time than blood donation. For this reason, the centers prefer not to take walk-ins. Before going through with the donation, you would need to drink lots of water to make up for the plasma lost in the process. Moreover, you should also have a good meal. When you take the appointment, the center will inform you about what you should do before the process.
The removal of blood plasma is known as plasmapheresis and takes around an hour. Before the donation, you would be screened and would need to pass a mini-physical medical examination, which includes checking the pulse rate, blood pressure, iron and blood sugar level, cholesterol level, and body temperature. After removing the required blood from the body, it will have to go through a process which involves the separation of blood cells from the plasma. At regular intervals, the blood cells would be returned to your body.
The compensation may differ from center to center. There are a few centers which provide donors with monetary benefits for a lifetime, which may range greatly in amount. Other centers provide the donors with points which can later be redeemed for gifts. Some facilities are profit-based, while some are not. You are more likely to receive remuneration if you donate your plasma to a profit-based facility.
There are over 330 licensed and certified plasma collection facilities in the USA alone, and over 25 facilities in Canada, Germany, and Austria. These centers are run by commercial institutions or the government. Every facility manages its operations and procedures in an individual manner, but has to abide by the rules and regulations of the government.
If you want to donate your blood plasma and need information about the working hours, compensation, and appointments, you would directly need to contact the nearest certified center. However, do ensure that the center is licensed and permitted to do so. Such facilities collect plasma and also create awareness about the advantages of donating blood. They normally accept all groups of blood from donors. Many pharmaceutical companies largely depend on such facilities for getting plasma, which is used effectively in treatments for chronic and rare diseases. The collected plasma may go directly to patients or be sold to medical research companies.
You can always gather information and find out blood plasma donation centers in your state by referring to the Yellow pages or searching on the Internet. Donating plasma is not only beneficial monetarily, but is also a wonderful chance to help the society.