How did we rapidly implement a convalescent plasma program?

Alexandra Budhai, Annie A. Wu, Lucette Hall, Donna Strauss, Sarai Paradiso, Jill Alberigo, Christopher D. Hillyer, Betsy Jett, Aaron A.R. Tobian, Evan M. Bloch, Bruce S. Sachais, Beth H. Shaz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, the use of convalescent plasma as a possible treatment has been explored. Here we describe our experience as the first U.S. organization creating a COVID-19 convalescent plasma program to support its use through the single-patient emergency investigational new drug, the National Expanded Access Program, and multiple randomized controlled trials. Within weeks, we were able to distribute more than 8000 products, scale up collections to more than 4000 units per week, meet hospital demand, and support randomized controlled trials to evaluate the efficacy of convalescent plasma treatment. This was through strategic planning; redeployment of staff; and active engagement of hospital, community, and public health partners. Our partners helped with donor recruitment, testing, patient advocacy, and patient availability. The program will continue to evolve as we learn more about optimizing the product. Remaining issues to be resolved are antibody titers, dose, and at what stage of disease to transfuse.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1348-1355
Number of pages8
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 1 2020

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology
  • Hematology


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