We have heard time and again that the Digital Universe is huge – and growing exponentially. Last I read, it is expected to be 44 ZB by 2020.So what has this to do with the Internet of Things (IOT)?IOT describes the inherent connectivity of devices and products for telemetry, data collection, etc. and is largely responsible for this data growth spurt.Simply put – sensors numbering in trillions, working with intelligence systems in the billions involving millions of applications will be what will drive data growth for the next five years.Ubiquitous connectivity is having a very definite effect on how we live our lives on this cloud-enabled planet. For example I jumped into my car late for work the other day. While driving, it occurred to me that I may not have shut my garage door. As soon as I parked, I launched my home security app and remotely closed it. At which point, my Apple watch buzzed to notify me to get active after sitting for an hour in traffic.Managing devices remotely has become so common place now that we don’t think about the cloud, IOT, or any aspect of the technology when we are using it.So what is the business opportunity IOT presents? And how does it translate to value?These are questions that many of our customers struggle with. At EMC we don’t just engineer hardware and software; we also deliver solutions that give customers a competitive edge in their industries. After all, our customers’ success becomes our success.I believe that the value of data is rapidly changing IT’s role from being a foundation supporting the business, to being an active critical component of business transformation.Some great examples include:A service provider offering mid-size retail clients near real-time analytics to deliver targeted coupons in their stores based on specific customer profilesAn auto insurance provider developing an application that works with a vehicle’s sensors and navigation system to track and analyze driving behavior to notify the driver of impacts on his/her future insurance premiumA utility company using sensors on a power plant, grid and meters to analyze the information and develop an application that allows customers to manage and optimize energy costsIT departments have been transformed through this culture of ubiquitous connectivity, and the ability to leverage IOT highlights the tremendous value that IT provides to the business. The scale of the opportunity is limited only by your imagination.We talk a lot about “transformation” at EMC, and in my opinion, it’s at the intersection of creativity and analytics where IOT goes from ideas to revenue.
With healthcare reform requirements, massive merger and acquisition initiatives and a growing need to manage the health of the patient population, healthcare providers face some daunting challenges and opportunities. Two truths seem clear: 1. the operational and clinical provider landscape will remain to some extent uncertain and 2. healthcare providers need a platform to modernize their data centers that will provide unmatched agility, speed, cost effectiveness, security and scalability.Combined with that as federal Electronic Health Records policy continues to evolve, technology initiatives have become critical to basic healthcare requirements from the smallest doctor’s office to the largest hospital. More so than ever, organizations trying to meet complex new federal mandates and adopt improved technology solutions find that their goals are a constantly moving target. On one hand, healthcare providers must accomplish more with less, yet effective care is increasingly dependent on a wide variety of increasingly complex and infrastructure intensive products and systems.The list is extensive: in addition to core EMR systems, organizations are using building automation systems, picture archiving and communications systems (PACS), computerized physician order entry (CPOE), clinical decision support systems (CDSS), closed circuit television (CCTV), real-time location-based systems (RTLS) and even interactive patient education systems. And this isn’t taking into consideration business apps like accounting, administration, learning management, workflow and process automation, intranet, logistics and even ERP. These are a few of the challenges and associated solutions that we’re looking forward to discussing with our customers and partners at HIMSS 2016.Chad Sakac and I took the opportunity to talk about these topics with customers at the Monday night VCE Users Group here at HIMSS.Challenges and OpportunitiesDealing with the frenetic rate of change in healthcare standards and application support required by today’s healthcare organizations means that scalability and forward thinking are critical to healthcare CIOs. As IDC reports, CIOs are being asked to reduce costs, consolidate resources, and produce and deliver higher quality services to support patient care more quickly than ever. At VCE, we’ve been able to optimize our Converged Platforms designs to accelerate IT transformation and dramatically simplify IT operations while mitigating risks. With VCE, healthcare organizations are able to shift resources to focus more on innovation and less on maintenance. The industry has thus been able to reduce costs, accelerate the return on investment and really reap the benefits of having state-of-the-art technology, optimized applications which enables improved patient care.Customers Realize the Benefits of Converged InfrastructureChad Eckes, EVP and CFO of Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center, turned to converged infrastructure as an effective technology to manage change without sacrificing strategic priorities.Wake Forest purchased and deployed three Vblock Systems: Vblock 720, Vblock 540, and Vblock 340 to provide the infrastructure for its new software-defined data center, Wake Cloud. The environment was designed to support not only the medical center’s upgrade to Epic 2014 EMR, but also more than 750 other applications.“Our first Vblock System was launched specifically to manage our very large imaging files. We were able to set up the entire Vblock System environment within two days—a process that had taken six weeks in the past,” Eckes says. “The implementation proved the financial case, and our governance’s response was, ‘How can we speed up the rest of the deployment?’”Chad Eckes spoke on the first HX360 panel of the day. He took time to emphasize the importance of an agile infrastructure when it comes to enabling innovation.With the implementation of the VCE Vblock System infrastructure, Wake Forest has been able to standardize, consolidate and converge technologies to simplify its IT environment and significantly reduce both its physical and management footprints. It also has successfully moved away from its previous project-based application delivery model—which resulted in an IT stack for each new solution—to a VCE-based enterprise hybrid cloud, service-based model.But system complexity isn’t the only challenge in healthcare. We’re increasingly witnessing regulatory concerns emerge as one of paramount importance to healthcare organizations. Since 2015, the HITECH act has made it essential for healthcare organizations to not only demonstrate meaningful use but also pay massive penalties that are assessed as a result of data breaches. Our customers consistently tell us that trusted converged infrastructure is key to enabling their organizations to centralize and control organizational data by leveraging unified management, enhanced security features and complementary technologies such as VDI to provide anytime access to medical systems while not allowing patient data outside the data center.Mark Braidwood, Director, Infrastructure Technology Architecture and Services, Interior Health relies on the MEDITECH electronic health record solution to help it provide efficient and more effective patient care. As the facility upgraded to the latest version, it chose to move to a converged infrastructure to answer MEDITECH’s expanded server, storage and networking requirements. Since choosing Vblock System Interior Health has seen improvements to MEDITECH’s performance and has enabled its IT support teams to focus on business enablement and training instead of reactive networking tasks.“By running MEDITECH and other applications on the same converged infrastructure, we’ve seen application performance improvements and efficiencies. This will go a long way in helping clinicians increase their productivity and responsiveness to patients. Ultimately, the Vblock System has helped IH deliver a better clinician experience, which leads to improved patient care,” Braidwood says.Choosing the Right Converged Infrastructure for YouThe maturity of the converged solution selected is an important aspect of garnering maximum value and business benefit from converged or hyper-converged infrastructure systems. In addition, the types of workloads running on these systems are critical in determining the best converged platforms. VCE ranks the strongest in both these categories as validated by both our customers and industry analysts.Source: Gartner (August, 2015)Gartner in their most recent Magic Quadrant analysis ranked our vision and ability to execute combined as the highest in the industry. The choice of Blocks, Racks and Appliances enables organizations of all sizes to flexibly and cost-effectively deploy converged and hyper-converged infrastructure systems that match their specific needs.For larger deployments, a variety of Vblock and VxBlock (VMware NSX ready) converged infrastructure systems are available depending on customer requirements. For the most extreme-scale projects, VCE offers the VxRack, a full rack hyper-converged system that collapses compute and storage into the same physical device and accommodates hyper-scale workloads. And finally, for small organizations or branch offices, the VCE’s hyper-converged infrastructure appliance, VxRail enables the most cost-effective scalability and ease of use while maintaining centralized management and configuration features available on larger systems.VCE’s Vision software unifies all of these systems separately or together into a single unified management framework, which is further augmented by the Solutions Exchange online portal which offers pre-built applications and connectors to other network management tools accelerating time to deployment and facilitating ease of management.Tyler Fisher, the CIO of Gordon Memorial Hospital summed up his experience selecting VCE converged infrastructure this way: “When I finished my presentation to the hospital board, the chairman said that it would be foolish not to purchase the Vblock System. That’s how clear we felt the decision was.”We remain committed to the healthcare industry and I’m excited by the opportunities ahead in delivering the industry’s richest, enterprise-scale, Converged Platforms customer experience.Join us at HIMSS 2016 at Booth #1921 on the Exhibit floor to hear more about EMC and VCE solutions in healthcare IT.
2-IN-1S:Inspiron 11 3000 2-in-1 – $299.99 (Save: $150) CYBER MONDAY DOORBUSTERS LAPTOPSInspiron 13 5000 2-in-1 – $699.99 (Save: $150)XPS 13 – $949.99 (Save: $150)Alienware 17 – $1999.99 (Save: $500) ALL-IN-ONEInspiron 24 5000 All-in-One – $399.99 (Save: $250)DESKTOPSInspiron Desktop – $299.99 (Save: $200) ELECTRONICS & ACCESSORIES:PlayStation 4 Slim 500 GB Uncharted 4 bundle + NBA 2K17 + $25 Dell Promo eGift Card – $279.99 (Save $80)VIZIO 50″ 4K Smart Ultra HDTV – E50x-E1 + Free Logitech Harmony 650 Universal Remote – $399.99 (Save $279.99) ELECTRONICS & ACCESSORIES:Xbox One S 500 GB Battlefield 1 bundle + Gears of War 4 + Xbox One Wireless controller – $249.99 (Save $170)Klipsch R6i In-Ear Headphones – $39.99 (Save $40) DisclosuresDHS:*Rewards are issued to your online Dell Advantage Loyalty Rewards Account (available via your Dell.com My Account) typically 24-48 hours after your order’s ship date; Rewards expire in 90 days (except where prohibited by law). “Current rewards balance” amount many not reflect the most recent transactions occurring within the past 24-48 hours. Up to 10% rewards only on Dell Preferred Account purchases. 5% reward on all other purchases. Bose products only eligible for 5% rewards. Outlet purchases do not qualify for rewards. Expedited Delivery not available on TVs 40” or larger and 55” Dell Branded Monitors. Other exceptions apply. See Dell.com/rewardsfaq.**DELL PREFERRED ACCOUNT (DPA): Offered to U.S. residents by WebBank, who determines qualifications for and terms of credit. Taxes, shipping, and other charges are extra and vary. Dell and the Dell logo are trademarks of Dell Inc. BUSINESS DOORBUSTERS AVAILABLE HERELatitude 14 3000 – $429 (Save: $412 after coupon* DELL429) – 11am ET on 11/21OptiPlex 3040 Micro – $399 (Save: $328 after coupon* DT399) – 11am ET on 11/16Dell UltraSharp 24 Monitor – $179 (Save $190 after coupon* SAVE190) – 11am ET on 11/21 Santa was already listening to children’s wishes at my local mall when I stopped in three days after Halloween. But even two days earlier, Dell’s Black Friday deals were making news.This holiday season we’re offering our biggest Black Friday and Cyber Monday doorbusters, including laptops and desktops starting at $99.99, on the largest inventory yet. That’s important when popular items sell out quickly, as the Mini NES Classic Edition did last week.But I’ve got a secret to share about how to get an advantage. Well, ok, it’s not really a secret, but you might not have heard that Dell Advantage Loyalty Rewards, Dell Member Purchase Program, Dell Financial Services and Dell Small Business customers can access doorbusters early now through November 18 and again on November 21-23 at 11 a.m. ET each day.Be aware that there will still be limited quantities of some deals, so let me also share some insider tips to hopefully reduce frustration.Don’t leave items in your cart for too long before completing a purchase. Just because it’s in the cart does not mean it is still available for purchase.Refresh your browser just before you purchase to ensure the product you want is still available.Check ahead of time that your planned method of payment will work. U.S. sales teams cannot accept international credit cards.Remember that “estimated delivery date” is not an exact delivery date. This estimation is calculated based on three key factors that you can find here along with other shipping and delivery details such as where to check the status of your order.Remember deals are only available while supplies last so make sure you check the time the deals are going live! The Black Friday deals start November 24-25 on Dell.com/blackfriday and Cyber Monday deals on November 28 at Dell.com/cybermonday. For Small Business deals, visit Dell.com/sb/blackfriday and Dell.com/sb/cybermonday.In addition to early access to those and future big deals, Dell Advantage Loyalty Rewards members can also enjoy free expedited delivery, five percent back in rewards on all purchases*, 10 percent back in rewards when you finance** and exclusive offers. If you aren’t a member, join today for free at www.dell.com/rewards and start reaping the rewards of a whole new and improved program.What’s so new and improved? It’s now easier to access, track and redeem rewards through your Dell My Account. All new rewards will be posted to your My Account within 48 hours of your order shipping. To use your rewards, simply log into your My Account prior to check out and apply your available balance in cart.Here are the top Black Friday and Cyber Monday doorbusters for both home and business that Dell Advantage Loyalty Rewards members and others can access starting today. Happy shopping, and don’t forget these online shopping safety tips from our Dell Technologies friends at Secureworks!BLACK FRIDAY DOORBUSTERS LAPTOPS:Inspiron 11 3000 – $99.99 (Save: $100)Inspiron 15 3000 – $199.99 (Save: $100)Inspiron 15 5000 – $379.99 (Save: $320) BUSINESS DOORBUSTERS:Latitude 15 3000 – $429 (Save $383 after coupon* DB429) – 11am ET on 11/28OptiPlex 3040 Mini Tower – $579 (Save $391 after coupon* 579DT) – 9am ET on 11/28Dell UltraSharp 27 InfinityEdge Monitor – $389.99 (Save $330 after coupon* SAVE330) – 3pm ET on 11/28 MONITORS:Dell UltraSharp 24 Monitor – $179 (Save $190.99) ALL-IN-ONE Inspiron 20 3000 All-in-One – $249.99 (Save: $130) MONITORS: Dell 24 Gaming Monitor – $99.99 (Save: $110)Dell 27 Curved Monitor – 199.99 (Save: $200) DESKTOPS:Inspiron Micro Desktop – $99.99 (Save: $100)Inspiron Desktop -$279.99 (Save: $220)Alienware Alpha Desktop – $299.99 (Save: $250)
Disaster recovery is one of the most important aspects an organization needs to handle, not only for business continuity, but also for regulatory reasons. Not every business can or wants to handle the additional cost of a physical site for disaster recovery. The cloud seems to be the optimal solution for that.Dell EMC’s Data Domain Cloud Disaster Recovery is a solution that allows users to extend their on-premises data protection to the cloud, and orchestrate the disaster recovery of a protected machine on the cloud. The solution has been available since early 2017 and many customers are already using it for their disaster recovery. Cloud Disaster Recovery is also included in the Integrated Data Protection Appliance (IDPA), which means that customers who are working with IDPA have by default, the ability to leverage the Cloud DR abilities.The Cloud DR process starts by copying data created on the on-premises by Avamar. Data is stored on Data Domain systems, including our integrated appliances (IDPA DP4400), or snap-based replication data created by RecoverPoint for VMs to an S3 bucket on your AWS account. This process is called protection and data is sent compressed over HTTPS/TLS 1.2, where it is stored securely and deleted by the cloud retention policy, which is configurable through the protection or replication solution (Avamar or RecoverPoint for VMs).After the data of a backup or a replication is available on the S3 bucket, the next backups can be incremental, meaning only new changes made to the machine will be sent to the cloud, so cloud storage usage and the billing are significantly reduced. When a machine needs to be recovered from the backup stored on the cloud, users have the ability to select a backup copy using the Cloud DR Server modern HTML 5 user interface and can recover in just a few button clicks.Leveraging VMware Cloud™ on AWS as a DR SiteIt’s been over a year since VMware™ Cloud on AWS was announced and it has gained popularity among organizations who seek the familiar VMware products and technology, without the hardware costs and complexity of building the entire infrastructure. It allows businesses to take advantage of the scalability the cloud can offer.The Cloud DR’s vision is to provide customers the opportunity and flexibility to work with different protection technologies and cloud platforms. Starting with the 18.2 release, which was available beginning in May 2018, Data Domain Cloud Disaster Recovery provides the ability to recover from an existing backup on the cloud directly to VMware Cloud™ on AWS.Cloud DR allows you to recover to VMware™ Cloud easily and intuitively. After configuring your software defined data center (SDDC) on VMware Cloud, you’ll be able to deploy a Cloud DR Add-on (CDRA) on the vCenter running on your SDDC. The SDDC doesn’t have to run all the time. You can configure it to run just for disaster recovery and continue with the CDRA deployment and configuration. This includes connecting the CDRA to your AWS account, and the vCenter on the SDDC. This process takes just a few minutes.During the configuration, make sure to enable the CDRA for direct failovers. Once this option is enabled from the CDRA, you’ll be able to use the Cloud DR Server (CDRS) to recover from a backup copy directly to the vCenter on the SDDC. Simply select a protected VM, any of its available cloud copies, and the target vCenter and CDRA (multiple CDRAs could be deployed on the same vCenter). After the recovery is initiated, the CDRA will create a new VM on the vCenter running on your SDDC on VMware Cloud, and that VM will retrieve the data that is stored on the S3 bucket.It wouldn’t take long to fully recover a VM to VMware Cloud, and the process is usually much quicker than a recovery to AWS because there is no data conversion process and because the internal connectivity between the SDDC and the resources on AWS. In internal lab qualifications, it took several minutes to recover a 150 GB Linux VM to VMware Cloud.You’ll can find several demos on Dell EMC’s YouTube channel, including the following:Recovery demo to AWS and to VMware CloudDeployment demoAdditional resources:Cloud Confidence eBook: Why Dell EMC Data Protection for VMware Cloud™ on AWSVideo: Overview of Dell EMC Cloud Disaster RecoveryVideo: Extend Disaster Recovery to VMware CloudLearn more: dellemc.com/[email protected] will also be discussing this in more detail at Dell Tech World in several different sessions including:Everything You Need to Know About Modern Data Protection for VMwareDell EMC Data Protection Portfolio Overview: Cloud-Enabled, Software-Defined, VMware IntegratedMoving DR to the Cloud – When does it make sense?
If a business faces a disaster scenario and no longer has access to their data, it is imperative for companies to to be able to recover their data. According to a recent ESG research report, 40% of customers surveyed said they use their cloud infrastructure for disaster recovery. Disaster Recovery (DR) in a traditional data center can be expensive, inefficient, and complex. Dell EMC, working with VMware and Amazon Web Services (AWS), can simplify these complexities through flexibility, scalability, integration, and automation to empower data owners for quick, efficient, and cost effective data recovery.Hans Ammitzbøll, Business Development Manager from Dell EMC, Henry Axelrod, Solutions Architect & Storage Specialist from AWS, and Adam Osterholt, Principal Cloud System Engineer for VMware CloudTM on AWS from VMware, recently presented about the current capabilities of the VMware CloudTM on AWS and how Dell EMC provides exceptional data protection solutions by combining market-leading technologies and easy-to-use management.Customers worldwide trust Dell EMC’s cloud-optimized data protection solutions and AWS to provide a secure cloud infrastructure. A key service that AWS offers for DR workloads is the Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2), which are virtual servers hosted on AWS cloud. This AWS offering enables customers to easily scale up or down, pay only for what they use, and provides instance types for virtually every workload and business need.VMware CloudTM on AWS is an integrated cloud offering developed by AWS and VMware that delivers a highly scalable and secure service that allows organizations to seamlessly migrate and extend their on-premises VMware VMs to the AWS Cloud running on Amazon EC2 infrastructure. Customers can spin up an entire VMware Software Defined Data Center (SDDC) in a couple of hours, and scale host capacity up and down in minutes. When a customer needs to extend their on-premises data protection to VMware CloudTM on AWS, there are four typical use cases: data center extension, DR, cloud migrations, and next-gen applications. VMware CloudTM on AWS is powered by VMware Cloud Foundation™, a unified SDDC platform that integrates VMware vSphere, VMware Virtual SAN™ and NSX™ virtualization technologies to provide access to the broad range of AWS services. Together, they offer customers a SDDC with the functionality, elasticity, and security customers have come to expect from the AWS Cloud and various offerings. It allows companies to run applications on the cloud without expensive refactoring of code, increase the value of their enterprise applications by giving them access to a broad range of AWS services for integrated application modernization, and capitalize on cloud agility and scale in an operationally consistent and familiar way.Dell EMC has partnered with VMware to deliver the first data protection solution for VMware CloudTM on AWS. With Dell EMC’s enterprise-grade data protection, companies can leverage the same data protection solution of VMware CloudTM workloads as they use for their on-premises workloads. Using one solution to protect hybrid cloud workloads simplifies data management and lowers the total cost of ownership (TCO). The Dell EMC data protection solution also provides customer integration with on-premises data protection, simplifying administration and enabling best-in-class deduplication and automated operations to lower cloud consumption costs.Dell EMC also leverages AWS to provide modern DR of virtualized workloads to lower the costs of legacy brick and mortar DR sites. With Cloud DR, organizations can protect their on-premises backup data residing on Data Domain using Data Protection Suite or through the Integrated Data Protection Appliance (IDPA). This is accomplished by transferring metadata and backing up data securely and efficiently into AWS S3 for VMware DR scenarios while taking advantage of agility and cost effectiveness of cloud object storage. Cloud DR requires minimal footprint in AWS as well as minimal compute cycles, enabling a DR solution at minimal cost. In the event of a disaster, the workloads can be run directly in AWS, or recovered to VMware CloudTM on AWS. This provides companies with a unique benefit as no backup and recovery infrastructure is needed for AWS recovery.Cloud DR adds value to existing on-premises Dell EMC data protection. Customers can now protect their workloads in AWS S3, and then recover to VMware CloudTM VMs with Cloud DR from Dell EMC. In just 3 clicks to failover, and 2 clicks to failback, Dell EMC enables easy and complete orchestrated DR. Recovery of VMs on VMware CloudTM requires no data conversion and provides rapid recovery of VM images from Amazon S3 using intra-region network where customers can recover VMs in minutes. This solution is also simple to operate, so customers can use familiar on-prem UI and have direct in-cloud access, monitoring, and reporting.There are cost benefits associated with deploying DR in this manner. Its efficient architecture allows customers to extend their on-premise data protection with minimal cloud cost and footprint, while eliminating DR data center costs. Specifically, customers have the option to provision VMware CloudTM’s SDDC on-demand when recovery is needed for cost efficiency. Resources within the cloud are only spun up if the primary data center is not available. This is much less expensive than having hardware up and running constantly within the public cloud. The resources are then decommissioned when no longer needed. All cloud DR orchestration features are available in both Standard and Advanced deployment models.In today’s data environment, customers require data integrity and flexibility in their data protection solutions. If a disaster happens, quick, efficient, and low-cost recovery is business critical. Together, VMware, AWS, and Dell EMC create a powerful cloud backup and recovery solution. Allowing customers to deploy and scale the right-sized cloud data protection no matter where their data lives can save time and money while reducing their cloud footprint. Dell EMC Data Protection cloud solutions natively tier up to 100 PB of logical capacity to the cloud and can be deployed through Amazon’s cloud marketplace. These solutions protect various workloads including traditional and cloud IaaS / PaaS workloads. They also offer multiple cloud use cases and help reduce monthly in-cloud data protection costs by 50% or more. This is just another example of how Dell EMC, VMware, and AWS are better together.To learn more: https://www.dellemc.com/en-us/data-protection/cloud.htm#scroll=offAdditional ResourcesClick here to watch an On Demand recording of the webinarClick here for Implementing a Sound Multi-Cloud Strategy blogClick here on How Dell EMC and VMware Simplify, Automate, and Protect your OrganizationClick here on how Dell EMC offers data protection in a multi-cloud worldClick here to read what Data Protection Strategies Dell EMC has for a multi-cloud world using VxRail ESG Research Report, Data Protection Cloud Strategies, December 2016
BRUNSWICK, Maine (AP) — A Maine company that’s developing a rocket to propel small satellites into space passed its first major test. Brunswick-based bluShift Aerospace launched a 20-foot prototype rocket on Sunday. It hit an altitude of a little more than 4,000 feet in a run designed to test the rocket’s propulsion and control systems. bluShift held the test at the site of the former Loring Air Force Base. The company is one of dozens racing to find affordable ways to launch so-called nano satellites. Some of the satellites can be as small as 10 centimeters by 10 centimeters.
NEW YORK (AP) — The erratic trading in shares of underdog companies like GameStop that turned markets combustible last week appears to have migrated to commodities, sending silver prices surging to an eight-year high. Silver futures jumped more than 9% on Monday to $29.42 per ounce. Last week, there were messages on the Reddit forum WallStreet Bets and other places on social media encouraging small investors to buy silver. The metal shot up Monday, but many of the online investors said it wasn’t them bidding up the price.
COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster and his wife have donated plasma to help patients who have COVID-19 recover more quickly from the disease. McMaster and the first lady contracted COVID-19 in December and doctors encourage people who recover from the disease to donate the blood product. The plasma is then transfused into the bodies of current hospitalized COVID-19 patients to lessen their symptoms and hopefully help them recover faster. The 73-year-old governor spent nearly two hours donating his plasma. Officials say it could help up to four COVID-19 patients. Red Cross officials say demand for the plasma has increased 250% since October.