Senior Nurse for Southport and Ormskirk, Hospitals NHS Trust, Laura Mercer, donating her blood plasma as part of the national Covid-19 clinical trial

A Senior Southport nurse has donated plasma into a national clinical trial after recovering from Covid-19.

Laura Mercer, who is Head of Quality Standards at Southport and Ormskirk Hospital NHS Trust, has donated some of her blood plasma in the hope that anti-bodies produced while she was ill will help in the treatment of others.

NHS Blood and Transplant is contacting people who have recovered from positive test result from COVID-19 and asking them to donate at its 23 blood donor centres, including Liverpool.

The trial will show how effective convalescent plasma is for treating new patients.

Laura donated her plasma at Liverpool Donor Centre in Dale Street and wants to reassure anyone else that is contacted that it is safe and easy.

She said: “It was quite a simple process really. Blood is taken from your arm, run through a machine, the plasma is separate out, and then returned to your body.

“The antibody-rich plasma could have a positive effect on treating patients, particularly those with very low-immunity themselves.

“It only took around 45 minutes and I was told that my body would have replaced the plasma within around 24 hours. I was ill with Covid-19 over a month ago and am now fully recovered and working part-time back in Southport Hospital.

“I hear on a daily basis the devastating effect this virus is having on families and just want to do anything I can to help where possible. If you get the call, please donate.”

If you have had a positive test result for COVID-19 you can help by giving you details at www.nhsbt.nhs.uk

Not everyone will be able to donate. You need to meet some eligibility criteria:

be between 17 and 66 years old

weigh more than 50kg

not be pregnant, or had a baby, miscarriage or termination within six months

not have an existing or previous heart condition

not have had a transfusion since 1st January 1980

live close enough to donate at one of 23 national donor centres
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