COVID-19 outbreak: Delhi govt sets ball rolling for setting up ‘plasma bank’

By: |
June 30, 2020 10:38 PM

he bank is being set up at the Delhi government-run Institute of Liver and Biliary Sciences (ILBS) and doctors or hospitals will have to approach it if plasma is required for treatment of a COVID-19 patient.

The move comes as convalescent plasma therapy has shown "encouraging" results in city hospitals, he had said.The move comes as convalescent plasma therapy has shown “encouraging” results in city hospitals, he had said.

The Delhi government has set the ball rolling to establish the first-of-its-kind ”plasma bank” for treatment of COVID-19 at a facility here and its modalities are being worked out, sources said on Tuesday. The bank is being set up at the Delhi government-run Institute of Liver and Biliary Sciences (ILBS) and doctors or hospitals will have to approach it if plasma is required for treatment of a COVID-19 patient. Addressing an online media briefing on Monday, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal had said the bank will be operational in the next two days.

The move comes as convalescent plasma therapy has shown “encouraging” results in city hospitals, he had said.
Sources said the facility where the plasma will be drawn from one person to donate to a COVID-19 patient, is being set up on the serving floor of the ILBS.

The plasma itself can be stored in the blood bank facility in a separate pack, a source said. According to experts, plasma needs cryogenic storage at minus 80 degrees Celsius or less. “Delhi heath department is making all the arrangements, some equipment needed for the procedure, might also be coming for the bank,” the source said.

Each donor, a person who has recently recovered from COVID-19, develops antibodies, which is transferred to the recipient through plasma.

“Each person can donate 250-500 ml of plasma. We give first dosage of 250 ml to the recipient, and if needed second dosage of 250 ml after 24 hours,” a senior doctor at a Delhi government hospital said. If a donor had given only 250 ml of plasma once, he or she can donate another 250 ml of it after a few days, the doctor said.

Asked what are the pre-conditions for a donor to be considered fit for plasma donation, he said, the donor should not have any co-morbidities, and should not be suffering from HIV, hepatitis or renal problems. Plasma is separated from the blood of donor using a plasmapheresis machine.

“This machine separates plasma and RBC, and the plasma is then stored in a blood bank and then donated to patients as per the need,” he said.

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