Press Release: July 01, 2020
CSL Plasma Recruits COVID-19 Positive Donors While Relaxing Safety Protocols
CSL Behring, CSL Plasma’s parent company, is a founding member of the CoVIg-19 Plasma Alliance, yet CSL Plasma has drastically reduced the safety protocols in their plasma donation centers nationwide while actively recruiting COVID-19 positive donors.
Until last week CSL Plasma Centers were checking temperatures at the door and ensuring mask wearing and hand sanitizing.
Last week CSL Plasma executives decided that it was prudent to have possible COVID-19 positive donors standing in line with other, hopefully-not-infected-yet donors when they stopped checking temperatures at the door. They also stopped enforcing hand sanitizing.
On June 30th a disturbance at the CSL Plasma Center on 4th Street in Albuquerque, NM was caused when a donor (me) discovered that the hand sanitizer dispenser next to the check-in kiosks wasn’t working. How many donors will voluntarily avoid using hand sanitizer (we know it happens) and how many people, and OSHA has this number, will not report a malfunctioning piece of safety equipment?
Until last week the CSL Plasma Center on 4th Street in Albuquerque, NM had a 100% rate of donors using hand sanitizer, while also having a 100% rate of temperatures checked. How many donors passed through that center yesterday without using hand sanitizer and how many made it all they way to the check-in desk before being turned away, and how many donors were potentially infected? We didn’t have to ask that question until last week. New habits have to be reinforced until they become old habits.
According to CDC Guidance for Blood and Plasma Facilities (https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/hcp/blood-and-plasma-collection.html) plasma centers are supposed to;
“Protect the health of staff, volunteers, and donors by reinforcing adherence to routine infection prevention and control measures, including hand hygiene practices, environmental infection control, and PPE.”
When a CSL Plasma Center allows a COVID-19 positive donor to stand in line with other donors before having their temperature checked, rather than at the door, then the CSL Plasma Center is purposefully and very recklessly exposing uninfected donors to an infected donor. WHY?
When CSL Plasma isn’t following the basic precautions already supposedly in place then how can they claim to be keeping donors safe while actively recruiting COVID positive donors?
How are COVID Positive Plasma Donors being segregated from the other donors and what are the risks of a ‘recovered’ COVID-19 sufferer being an asymptomatic carrier and infectious?
I agree that plasma donation is essential and I have done it consistently, twice a week, for almost 7 years, but CSL Plasma allowing the process to be degraded increases the chances of the plasma itself being contaminated in addition to the reckless, needless and easily avoidable spread of COVID-19.
As a long term, consistent plasma donor I don’t feel safe in an environment where the company simply doesn’t have the nerve to enforce real precautions and frankly I’m deeply ticked off that the best plasma center I’ve ever been to can’t be bothered to keep donors safe and truly do not care whether they create a situation where donors are infecting our relatives and even the people we pass on the street.
CSL Plasma, by not having the balls to enforce safety standards, has taken the entire process backwards in a stupid and useless way that didn’t benefit anyone.
How much money do CSL Plasma executives make and why do they think it’s OK to create an unsafe environment for donors while potentially calling into question the integrity of the entire process?