International Plasma Awareness Week: Plasma Donors are the Foundation

Annapolis, MD--The fifth annual International Plasma Awareness Week (IPAW) will be celebrated October 8-14. A joint initiative of the Plasma Protein Therapeutics Association (PPTA) and its member companies, IPAW is designed to:

  • Raise global awareness about source plasma collection
  • Recognize the generous contributions of plasma donors in saving and improving lives
  • Increase understanding about lifesaving plasma protein therapies and rare diseases

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Plasma is the straw-colored liquid portion of blood comprised of water, salts, and proteins. These proteins are necessary for carrying out critical functions in the human body, such as antibodies to fight diseases and clotting factors to regulate bleeding. If a person has insufficient levels of any one plasma protein, his or her body cannot carry out these vital functions, causing a variety of chronic and life-threatening medical conditions.

Plasma is used to create lifesaving therapies to treat chronic, life-threatening diseases including bleeding disorders, hereditary angioedema, chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy, primary immune deficiencies, alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency, and certain rare neurological disorders. In addition, these therapies are used in emergency and surgical medicine.

 

Plasma protein therapies are made from human plasma which can only be obtained from healthy, qualified donors who generously give their time to donate. Plasma donors are the foundation of the plasma protein therapeutics industry. Healthy and committed donors are paramount for preparing safe and effective therapies; plasma protein therapies would not exist without the generosity of donors in the U.S., Canada, Germany, Austria, the Czech Republic, and Hungary.

In addition to meeting regulatory requirements, the majority of plasma donation centers have achieved International Quality Plasma Program (IQPP) certification. PPTA’s voluntary standards program provides global leadership for the industry’s goal of continuous improvement with a focus on safety and quality from the donor to the patient.  

“People throughout the world rely on plasma protein therapies which are developed through the generosity and commitment of plasma donors. PPTA is proud of the contributions we and our member companies make to saving and improving lives,” said Joshua Penrod, PPTA, Vice President, Source & International Affairs.

PPTA member companies—which collectively operate more than 650 IQPP-certified plasma collection facilities—are planning a variety of donor appreciation events during IPAW which helps remind donors of the immense contribution they make toward improving a patients’ life. In addition, patient organizations representing individuals with rare diseases have pledged their support. A multi-language media kit is available; use #IPAW2017 when sharing the materials to show your support. 

About PPTA

The Plasma Protein Therapeutics Association (PPTA), a global industry trade association, represents the private sector manufacturers of plasma-derived and recombinant analog therapies, collectively known as plasma protein therapies and the collectors of source plasma used for fractionation. These therapies are used by millions of people worldwide to treat a variety of diseases and serious medical conditions. PPTA also administers standards and programs that help ensure the quality and safety of plasma protein therapies, donors, and patients.

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