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About Desert Care Network

Desert Care Network is your healthcare resource in the Coachella Valley and Morongo Basin regions of Southern California. We are three hospitals: Desert Regional Medical Center in Palm Springs; JFK Memorial Hospital in Indio; and, Hi-Desert Medical Center in Joshua Tree.  Working together, we bring advanced healthcare to our communities. Learn more about our Community Built on Care.

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Desert Regional Medical Center receives its first COVID-19 Convalescent Plasma Donation

Apr 24, 2020

Hospital among first in Riverside County to use COVID-19 Convalescent Plasma on some Patients

PALM SPRINGS, Calif. April 24, 2020 – Desert Regional Medical Center announced today it is one of the first hospitals in Riverside County to provide COVID-19 convalescent plasma to treat some of its existing hospitalized COVID-19 positive patients.

Convalescent plasma is taken from a donor who has fully recovered from COVID-19. Desert Regional Medical Center received its first delivery of plasma this week from LifeStream, a local nonprofit blood bank that provides products and services to more than 80 southern California hospitals and medical facilities.

The use of convalescent plasma has been studied in outbreaks of other respiratory infections, including the 2003 SARS epidemic as well as the 2009-2010 N1H1 influenza virus pandemic. Desert Regional Medical Center will follow FDA guidance for administering convalescent plasma to patients who meet the established criteria.  

“We’re honored to be among the first hospitals in Riverside County to receive and use COVID-19 convalescent plasma with some of our COVID-19 positive patients,” said Xolani Mdluli, MD, an infectious disease physician at Desert Regional Medical Center. “We’ve seen encouraging results over the years with convalescent plasma in patients with other similar viruses, and remain hopeful this will yield similar results with COVID-19 positive patients.”

“LifeStream Blood Bank is very proud that we were able to rapidly implement a Convalescence Plasma Program to assist our local hospitals treating COVID19 patients in the region,” said Rick Axelrod, MD, LifeStream Blood Bank’s president/CEO and medical director. ”We are pleased to issue our first products to Desert Regional Medical Center to help assist our local physicians treating patients with this challenging disease.”