By Jess Kelsey
One of the world’s largest collectors of human plasma, CSL Plasma is now open in Mustang.
The former Aaron’s building has been transformed into a state-of-the-art plasma donation center located at 140 South Symes Ln. off state Highway 152.
CSL Plasma Mustang Center Manager Sam Emrich called Mustang the ideal location for the company’s newest center, saying the company broke its typical mold of building centers in heavily populated areas when it decided to land in Mustang.
“State Highway 152 is a major artery in connecting Oklahoma City’s surrounding communities, so it made for an ideal location in helping to reach more potential donors who may not be able to travel to our other centers within Oklahoma City,” said Emrich.
Emrich said he hopes the new center will bring in donors from not only Mustang, but also Yukon, Tuttle, and other surrounding areas within a 30-mile radius.
According to the company’s website, CSL Plasma is committed to saving lives and improving the quality of life for people with rare and serious diseases. Donations made at CSL Plasma in Mustang will help create CSL therapies that will be used to treat coagulation disorders including hemophilia and von Willebrand disease, primary immune deficiencies, hereditary angioedema, inherited respiratory disease, and neurological disorders. The company’s products are also used in cardiac surgery, organ transplantation, burn treatment and to prevent hemolytic disease of the newborn.
Mustang’s donation center currently has 18 donation machines, allowing for 18 donations to be processed at a single time, but Emrich said they have room for that number to eventually grow up to 36 machines.
The center currently employs around 20 staff members, but as donations increase, the need for staff will eventually increase as well, said Emrich.
The Mustang location is currently open five days a week, Tuesday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., but may also add more days and hours as the facility begins to compensate for demand of donors.
Emrich said those interested in donating need to plan anywhere from 2-3 hours for their first donation, which includes a health screening, but after the initial donation, a typical donation takes approximately 90 minutes.
Donors will be asked to provide a valid form of identification, proof of residency (within 30 miles) dated within the last 30 days, and proof of a Social Security Number.
The donation process includes answering health-related questions, a physical examination, and a testing of the donor’s vitals to verify the eligibility for donation. Once all eligibility requirements have been met, donors will begin the process of donating their plasma. Upon completion of the donation, the plasma is stored in an on-site freezer and donors are compensated for their time on a reloadable prepaid card.
New donors will receive $50 each for the first five donations completed within 45 days. Returning donors will then be compensated based off weight and amount of times they donate in a week. Donors can donate once in a two-day period and no more than twice in a seven-day period.
Donors weighing 110 to 149 pounds will receive $20 for their first donation of the week and $30 for their second. Donors weighing 150 to 174 will receive $25 for their first donation and $45 for their second. Donors weighing 175 to 400 will receive $25 for their first donation and $50 for their second.
Michael Solomon with CSL Plasma said donors are compensated for their time and donation because it actually takes several donations to be able to help patients in need.
“We can only actually use about five to seven percent of a unit of plasma that someone donates because the rest is water,” said Solomon. “It can take upwards of 10 to 15 units of donation for one therapy for a patient.”
Emrich said many people might not be aware of this, so he hopes this center helps bring in repeat donors.
“The need for the human plasma is very, very big,” said Emrich. “When I was in training years ago, my manager told me about the bleeding disorder hemophilia – that’s one of the ones that always stands out to me – and I remember him saying that sometimes it takes up to 20 donations just for one treatment. So a whole day’s production at a facility might just be for one patient.”
As CSL Plasma opens its doors this week to the center’s first donors, Emrich and Solomon said they hope to soon start giving back to the community.
“CSL Plasma traditionally gives back to its communities, so we will be looking for ways to volunteer our time throughout the community,” said Emrich. “We really want to be apart of Mustang as we continue to grow.”
For more information on CSL Plasma and how to become a donor, visit www.cslplasma.com.