Delivering Convalescent Plasma for COVID-19 Patients
Blood plasma of patients who have recovered from COVID -19 has been shown to be a very effective treatment for patients who are fighting acute cases of the virus. The plasma contained in such blood is high in antibodies and is called convalescent plasma. It helps immune systems reject the pathogen more efficiently and has lessened symptoms and even saved lives.
As virus hot spots appear around the country, Blood Centers of America (BCA) is hard at work finding and gathering donations of convalescent plasma for hospitals all over the U.S. Patients who need convalescent plasma therapy can come from anywhere at any time – and time is of the essence as the treatment has a short lifespan, and it can only help patients if it is administered on time. “It’s times like these that we are reminded of how valuable our partnership with MNX is,” said Sam Keith, Senior Vice President Supply Chain & Business Development at BCA.
In addition to the time-sensitive transportation needs for convalescent plasma, there are other factors that complicate the shipments even further. First, it must be kept at below-freezing temperatures and packed in dry-ice; second, deliveries must be made in less than 24 hours; and third, pick-ups are at all hours of the day to maximize dry-ice efficacy and flight schedules. In fact, many pick-ups occur in the early hours from 2:00 am to 3:00 am to take advantage of early morning flights.
MNX proactively began strengthening our networks to accommodate the growing need for convalescent plasma. Which included getting our operations staff trained on convalescent plasma transportation and handling. Dry-ice sourcing was bolstered at all points of connection, especially for after-hours access. Most importantly, we joined multiple partnerships like, The Fight Is In Us, to explore ways MNX can help get this life-saving treatment to every patient who needs it, when they need it.
A recent delivery of convalescent plasma to Corpus Christi, TX demonstrates how MNX preparedness ensures shipments reach their destinations on time. The MNX team secured space on a connecting flight from New York City to Corpus Christi, TX and began monitoring all activity. When the connecting flight suffered a delay at Dallas/Fort Worth, MNX Logistics Coordinators decided to pull the shipment out of the airline network, and drive it 400 miles to its destination. It was after-hours by that time, and MNX had to coordinate the shipment extraction with the airline, arrange for dry ice replenishment, and organize delivery with the intended contact. Even with these complications, MNX ensured that the convalescent plasma shipment remained viable and was delivered with time to spare.
COVID-19 patients around the country are now benefiting from the hard work of multiple agencies who, like MNX, know that every second counts when it comes to therapies like convalescent plasma. At MNX our daily standard is to do our jobs 100% correctly, 100% of the time. It’s never been more apparent than with the daily convalescent plasma deliveries MNX is making during this pandemic.
The Fight Is In Us
At MNX we believe our responsibilities to customers and the communities we serve don’t end with delivery signatures. Never in our history have so many of our shipments been about saving lives. That’s why we’ve expanded our partnerships and become members of multidisciplinary projects and studies like The Fight Is In Us, an innovative public-private coalition whose mission is to optimize the use of COVID-19 convalescent plasma to help save lives. By being part of this united effort, the group can leverage the influence, skills, and resources of members to accelerate the availability of two promising treatments, convalescent plasma transfusion and plasma-derived hyperimmune globulin medicine, to prevent and treat COVID-19.
However, we can’t do it alone. We need COVID-19 patients who have recovered to donate their precious plasma. Please think about donating if you qualify.