Covering Coronavirus: Tips, best practices and programs

How to report on life-saving COVID-19 plasma donations

When Tom Hanks recovered from COVID-19, he donated blood plasma to help save the lives of up to three other COVID-19 patients—calling the donation “as easy as taking a nap,” as the Los Angeles Times reported. Hundreds of health care providers can now offer this “convalescent plasma” to COVID-19 patients who choose to request or accept it, as shown on this map. Yet most people who get COVID-19 don’t know that this may be an option to help them recover, and wouldn’t know of the opportunity to donate plasma—for example, to the Red Cross—after they recover. Local journalists can report on this little-known aspect of COVID response, drawing on resources such as the website Here’s an example of local coverage that did not rely on Tom Hanks: Convalescent plasma one of the best hopes for COVID-19 treatment.