Gujarat govt plans plasma transfusion to treat COVID-19 patients

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Updated: April 18, 2020 10:07 AM

An antibody is a protein produced mainly by plasma cells that is used by the immune system to neutralize bacteria and viruses.

The civil hospital in Ahmedabad and the civic body-run SVP Hospital here have prepared a detailed proposal about the plasma transfusion.

The Gujarat government has decided to carry out plasma transfusion treatment on COVID-19 patients in the state, particularly those in critical condition, to boost their immunity, health officials said. In this treatment, the plasma extracted from the blood of a fully recovered COVID-19 patient is injected into the
critical patient to help his body generate antibodies to fight the virus.

An antibody is a protein produced mainly by plasma cells that is used by the immune system to neutralize bacteria and viruses. The civil hospital in Ahmedabad and the civic body-run SVP Hospital here have prepared a detailed proposal about the plasma transfusion treatment for coronavirus patients and submitted it to the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) for approval, Principal Secretary, Health, Jayanti Ravi, said.

“We have learned that the ICMR has given approval to the Kerala government for such plasma transfusion treatment. From Gujarat, Ahmedabad civil hospital and SVP Hospital have sought ICMR’s permission to start this treatment for coronavirus patients,” she said.

“Both the hospitals are ready to start it. They have already sent their proposals for approval,” Ravi added. “An antibody is generated by the human body to fight a virus. Those who are fully recovered have such antibody protein in their blood plasma. We will take it from them and transfuse it into those who are critical and on ventilator support.

“That plasma will help the patient to generate antibodies to fight coronavirus,” she said. The Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation, which runs SVP Hospital, has already taken consent of some plasma donors.
“SVP Hospital is ready to start plasma treatment once we get permission from ICMR. We have also convinced some donors, who are fully recovered from coroavirus infection, to give their plasma for treatment of others,” Ahmedabad Municipal Commissioner Vijay Nehra said.

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