The Oklahoma Blood Institute said they're in urgent need for plasma.
They're asking for those who have recovered from COVID-19 to donate in order to help those who are still battling the virus.
Officials with OBI saod this is in response to the rise in COVID-19 hospitalizations. They said the supply for plasma has reached critically low levels. As COVID-19 numbers spike across the state, the OBI said it's important to have the resources needed to help as many patients as possible.
"The need for convalescence plasma for patients in need here in Oklahoma has risen so dramatically," said Dr. Tuan Le, Chief Medical Officer with OBI.
Convalescent plasma can only be donated by those who have recovered from COVID-19. They said a single donation can provide plasma for up to four COVID-19 patients. We're told the need for this plasma within our area has increased by 700% in recent weeks.
"If you can, do it," said Linda Rinehard, a donor. "I know if I was in the hospital, really sick with it, I'd sure want it."
Rinehard said she's donated plasma for several years now, and though she did not test positive for COVID-19, she believes it's important to try and help those who need it.
The OBI said they're currently seeing a decline in eligible plasma donors, so starting next week they're offering each donor a chance to win one of two $1,000 prizes.
"We're pulling out all the stops in terms of asking donors to come in and we believe that the use of the lottery prize is a synergy to help us do that," said Dr. Le.
Officials said to donate plasma, donors must be symptom-free for 14 days and be at least 7 days past their last blood or plasma donation.
If you want to schedule a donation you can visit obi.org.