Plasma Therapy Offers New Treatment Option To COVID-19 Patients

Clay Curtis
April 8, 2020

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) continues to play a critical role in accelerating medical countermeasures to treat and prevent COVID-19 disease. "Plasma will only be collected from volunteer donors who have fully recovered from the virus and will be used by Canadian physicians caring for patients with COVID-19 in the context of the clinical trial". Dozens of hospitals formed that group to spur plasma donation and research.

"The history of the therapy of plasma da hopebut until we do the clinical trial, we will not have certainty".

Tiffany Pinckney says she remembers the feeling of her breathe being taken away when she fell ill with COVID-19 and is now both eager to help others, and amazed that her blood may have that ability.

How does this technique work and why prestigious doctors and scientists believe that it might work? Donors must meet all the usual screening criteria for blood donations as well as additional criteria provided by the FDA. "The FDA had played a key role in organizing a partnership between industry, academic institutions, and government agencies to facilitate expanded access to convalescent plasma".

"People feel very helpless in the face of this disease".

The principle is simple: make transfusions plasma of the blood of those who have already recovered from the disease to patients who are battling against it.

Listen as OneBlood's Susan Forbes explains the experimental plasma treatment for COVID-19.

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Doctors at the St Lukes and Memorial Hermann, said, that someone who has recovered from COVID-19 in the past two weeks and is now healthy would be the right match for the blood donation.

In the United Kingdom, researhers from the University of Glasgow have applied to the National Institute for Health Research to run clinical trials using plasma. This will allow for a simplified process for providers that will help to ensure patient safety, while also allowing for the collection of needed information about product efficacy.

This week, Berrent was the first survivor in her state screened for antibodies - immune system-generated proteins that can ward off viruses - to contribute to initial tests seeking treatment for the infection that's left more than 51,000 people dead worldwide. The program was developed with funding from the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA), a component of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Office of the Assistant Secretary of Preparedness and Response. But they also received other therapies, and without a rigorous study, there´s no way to know if the plasma made the difference.

"It may not be a silver bullet, or it may work for instance to stem the development of Covid-19 infection in contacts such as healthcare workers and their families, but not perhaps be as effective to treat severely ill patients being ventilated".

Convalescent plasma was also successfully used during the 1918 flu pandemic, he said. That wouldn't be helpful, ' said Dr Julie Ledgerwood of the National Institutes of Health.

"Based on prior experience with respiratory viruses and on data that have emerged from China, these products have the potential to lessen the severity or shorten the length of illness caused by COVID-19", the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) said in a statement on April 3.

Plasma donations from coronavirus patients who have recovered are needed at LifeSouth Community Blood Centers to potentially help people now suffering from COVID-19. "We are developing a coordination plan with Red Cross and other agencies to collect and distribute plasma".

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