Money for blood

Dani Palmer

By MATT ZIELSKE
Sports editor

Plasma donors have many reasons for contributing to this growing trend.

Some donate for charity or to help a family member. Others use the extra cash earned from donating to fund weekend excursions.

Zane Clodfelter, junior journalism major, for example, uses his earnings to drive to and attend Cardinals baseball games.

“Nothing beats a summer night in St. Louis, it’s definitely a baseball city,” Clodfelter said. “I love the Cardinals. Baseball is the first indication of summer, and warm weather, which to me is the best part of the year.”

By donating plasma for a couple of hours twice a week, Clodfelter is able to watch the games he loves.

Clodfelter goes to the CSL Plasma location off of Weinbach Avenue and the Lloyd Expressway.

For first time donors, the process takes a little longer because each new donor must answer a series of questions.

CSL technicians can then determine if they are healthy enough to donate.

“The plasma bank does a good job of making sure the donor is fully capable of donating that day prior to the process beginning,” Clodfelter said.

After questioning, technicians record the donor’s blood pressure, temperature, heart rate and weight recorded.

The CSL staff will not allow anyone under 110 pounds to donate. This, and similar standards, are in place for the donor’s safety Chris Florentz, manager of communications for CSL Behring, the parent company of CSL Plasma, said.

Clodfelter isn’t the only USI student that attends CSL plasma either. Florentz reported that somewhere between 10 to 15 percent of the traffic seen at CSL are students.

Proteins are extracted from the plasma and used to create therapies that treat diseases and disorders. The proteins treat everything from hemophilia, immune disorder to angioedema, Florentz said.

He stressed not only the medical benefits but also the economic benefits to the community.

“The average payroll for an institution like CSL is $1.5 million a year,” Florentz said. “Donor compensation runs in the area of $2 million per year. These indivudals are surely putting this money back into the local economy.”

CSL Behring made roughly $2.8 billion last year in profits, according to Florentz.

Clodfelter, and others similar to him, provide the proteins necessary to save lives. According to Florentz,  the real payoff is the people affected by the process and the elderly, people similar to Clodfelter’s age and young individuals who see the results of plasma donation.

At the end of the day, Florentz said he sees how these peoples’ quality of life is improved through plasma donation and that’s what really matters to him.