WSJ examines Red Cross's plasma business

The Red Cross is best known for its charitable projects, such as the relief efforts after September 11 and Hurricane Katrina. However, insiders know that the Red Cross is about more than just disaster relief. The Wall Street Journal looks at the money-making side of the non-profit's business. Plasma product sales bring the Red Cross about $2.1 billion, easily surpassing the charitable contributions it receives. The charity holds about half of the U.S. market. Some critics are questioning the healthcare giant's safety practices. A federal court is hearing arguments today in a case in which a whistleblower alleges Red Cross officials allowed improperly collected donations to enter the nation's blood supply.

- see this Wall Street Journal article (sub. req.)