ORLANDO, Fla. - As Florida Governor Ron DeSantis tried to push for more plasma donations during a press conference at OneBlood's office in Orlando, his message was drowned out, once again, by protesters.
For the second time in a week, a group of protesters, upset at the governor's response to the COVID-19 pandemic, shouted at him during his Monday event.
"Shame on you!" they were heard shouting. Along with, "Why are you lying about antibody tests? Why are you lying about unemployment?"
The small group of protesters were removed from inside the building, but their chants, along with their pounding on the glass walls, were still heard.
Governor Ron DeSantis is seen smiling as a small group of protesters yell, "Shame on you!" and were escorted out of the OneBlood office.
The governor paused as they were escorted, but continued speaking, asking for citizens to donate plasma to replenish supplies as hospitalizations around the state increase, partly due to the rise in coronavirus patients.
“Donate your plasma, it’s very, very important,” DeSantis said Monday. “You can make a difference in people’s health and in their lives.”
The interruption continued as OneBlood CEO Bud Scholl spoke. Near the end of his speech, Scholl said, "I hope none of them need convalescent plasma."
According to OneBlood, just one week ago, they experienced a 500% increase in hospital orders for COVID-19 convalescent plasma.
“We are urging people who have recovered from the coronavirus to step forward and donate their plasma, they are urgently needed”, Susan Forbes, senior vice president of corporate communications, said at the time.
OneBlood officials say part of the high demand is due to doctors giving convalescent plasma to more patients earlier in their treatment to prevent progression of the disease.
Last week, a protester also yelled, "shame on you" at the governor during a coronavirus press conference in Miami.
Afterward, Thomas Kennedy posted about the protest on Twitter, writing: “I just interrupted a press conference in Miami-Dade to let governor @RonDeSantisFL and @MayorGimenez know they are an embarrassment to FL and that their incompetence and lack of planning has resulted in the current public health crisis."
Additional information on donating convalescent plasma can be found on OneBlood's website.