Plasma donations started at Blood Service

Blood Service resumes plasma collection after a break of several years. Plasma can be donated at the Blood Service’s Vantaa unit.

Plasma contains several important constituents that can be separated from plasma and produced into medicinal products. For several years now, there has been a shortage of medicinal plasma products in Europe. For example immunoglobulins are widely used in various diseases; in patients with antibody deficiency, they are the only treatment option.

How to donate plasma

Plasma donation is called plasmapheresis, or apheresis for short. It takes place similarly to blood donation, but the device only collects plasma and returns the other parts, i.e. red blood cells and platelets, back to the donor’s bloodstream. The donation takes around 45 minutes, and it is a good idea to reserve a little over an hour for the visit, including time for coffee.

Plasma is also separated from ordinary whole blood donations, but the amount collected by plasmapheresis is about three times higher.

Who can donate plasma?

You can donate plasma if you have previously donated whole blood at least once. As a rule, the same basic requirements for donor eligibility apply to plasma donation as for whole blood donation, but deferral periods related to travel or living abroad, for example, do not need to be taken into account at all.

The plasma donor should weigh at least 60 kg and have a body mass index (BMI) of max 40.

In plasma donations, blood group is irrelevant when components are separated from the plasma and used as a raw material for medicines – unlike in whole blood donation. Therefore, donors who have blood groups AB+ and B+ are preferred as plasma donors, because their blood is needed less often for patients than blood from other blood groups.

We recommend that donors with other blood groups (e.g., A+, O+, O-) continue with normal blood donations to help patients!

Where and when can plasma be donated?

Plasma can only be donated at the Blood Service’s Vantaa unit at the Jumbo-Flamingo shopping centre.  You must book an appointment in advance to donate plasma at ajanvaraus.veripalvelu.fi/afereesi

Where does the donated plasma end up?

The plasma collected in Finland is delivered to Blood Service’s partner Takeda, where it is used to produce medicinal products.

Blood Service has received support from the National Emergency Supply Agency to start plasmapheresis so that we can be prepared even in exceptional circumstances.