Base guard Marcus Smart of the Boston Celtics who just yesterday, Monday, said she was free of the coronavirus, after testing positive two weeks ago, confirmed on Tuesday night that she plans to donate her blood so that it can be studied in hopes of finding a treatment that will help her overcome the deadly COVID-19 disease.
04/01/2020 at 08:21
According to Michael Joyner, an anesthesiologist at the Mayo Clinic, at least four NBA players who have recovered from the coronavirus plan to donate blood to the National Convalescent Plasma Project COVID-19, an experimental treatment that could help patients with high risk of recovering from the virus.
The doctor’s statements were offered in an interview with ABC News, while Smart’s agent confirmed that he is one of the players who participated in the tests.
The identities of the other three players were not revealed by the medical center or by Joyner.
The NBA contacted team doctors Sunday, encouraging players who have recovered from the virus to participate in the experimental treatment, according to a copy of the memo obtained by ABC News.
Joyner said Tuesday that he believes experimental treatment “can modify the disease and reduce its duration and severity in some patients.”
The therapy uses antibodies in the blood of recovered patients to potentially slow the virus in sick patients.
Joyner explained that professional athletes could be plasma donors especially valuable because “they are big men and as a result they have a lot of plasma volume.”