THE Chief Executive of the Materials Processing Institute is urging people who have recovered from Covid-19 to donate life-saving blood plasma to an NHS clinical trial.

Chris McDonald self-isolated in March after he became very ill. Although undiagnosed at the time, later tests confirmed he had contracted coronavirus.

While in recovery, he registered for the convalescent plasma trial – which involves collecting plasma for transfusion to Covid-19 patients to assess its effectiveness as a treatment.

Mr McDonald, head of the Teesside based not-for-profit research and innovation centre, said: “I was motivated to proceed with the trial after my uncle, who was in a vulnerable group, had a fall and sadly passed away after contracting Covid while in hospital.

“My personal experience in both recovering from Covid-19 and tragically losing my uncle to the disease, has driven me to contribute in this way. By donating blood plasma, I hope that other families may be spared suffering the loss of a close family member.

“I am a bit anxious with needles, so I was concerned initially, but actually it is similar to giving blood. I just relaxed and read a book for 40 minutes, whilst having a drink and biscuits. We all want to support the NHS in overcoming coronavirus, and a really simple way to help is for anyone who has had Covid-19, and is fully recovered, to sign up for this trial."