ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (CW44 News At 10)– Freedom Plasma is expanding its service by opening a second location in St. Petersburg on May 24, 2022.
The new blood plasma donation center compensates donors for their efforts and comes at a time when donations are needed to meet global demand.
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“Plasma is used to create many life-saving medicines and plasma-based treatments for those suffering from a wide variety of chronic diseases,” said Blair McKinney, chief operating officer of ImmunoTek Bio Centers, one of the partner companies that designed, built , and will operate the center. Freedom Plasma has another location in the Sunshine State in Winter Haven, and currently operates centers in eleven other states with more locations in development.
Due to advances in medicines and treatments for patients, the need for human plasma donations continues to increase. The United States provides two-thirds of the world’s plasma, and the new center in Florida will help meet the growing need. Plasma makes up more than half of a human’s blood volume; it is the golden, protein-rich liquid portion of the blood that remains after the red and white blood cells are removed. This plasma is manufactured into medicines that patients depend on for their specific plasma-based therapy. To treat a single patient annually, between 130 and 1,200 plasma donations from healthy donors are required. The community is invited to visit the center and learn more about the need for plasma donations.
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“The economic impact of a functioning Freedom Plasma center is about $5 million annually,” McKinney said. “The community benefits from the construction of this new center, receiving donor compensation for its members and experiencing healthcare-oriented jobs; In addition, our donors know that they are helping to save lives.”
Following an internal evaluation along with a medical history and physical examination by medical professionals, donors can roll up their sleeves and donate plasma in the same manner as a blood donation. The donation procedure uses a safe, sterile, and self-contained automated process called plasmapheresis. Plasma can be donated up to two times in a seven-day period.
“Donating blood plasma at a donation center like Freedom Plasma is truly a life-saving gift to those who depend on plasma-derived medicines to live every day. Not only is it used to create valuable therapeutics and vaccines, but recent research also shows promise with plasma-derived therapies that reduce or limit the effects of Alzheimer’s disease and dementia,” said Jerome Parnell III, CEO of ImmunoTek. “Due to its unique biological makeup, plasma cannot be manufactured synthetically, so we rely on donated plasma to create plasma-based medicines that ultimately benefit patients around the world.”
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The Freedom Plasma donation center in St. Petersburg is located at 5651 38th Avenue N and operates Tuesday through Saturday. After the first week of operation, which is by appointment only, walk-in donors will be welcome. To make an appointment or learn more about donating plasma, contact Freedom Plasma at 316-201-3449 or visit Freedomplasma.com