COVID19 Plasma Therapy! Is it Working?
Back in April, we learned that Spectrum Health and begun treating COVID19 patients with Plasma Therapy, blood plasma from patients who have recovered from the disease. Has it worked?
Plasma Therapy has actually been around for well over 100-years, according to Dr. Gordana Simeunovic who is guiding the current program. But with the advent of vaccines and other medical treatments for different diseases, it hasn't been used much, until now. With only a glimmer of hope that we will have a vaccine to fight COVID19/Coronavirus by the end of the year, or early 2021, doctors and researchers have been left on their own to fight this deadly disease.
So, in mid-April, Spectrum Health began treating COVID-19 patients with blood plasma from patients who have recovered from the disease, providing an additional treatment option to the most severely affected COVID-19 patients. And to date, 60 of the most desperately ill COVID-19 patients have received the treatment, with 47 patients recovering from the disease.
We're certainly not out of the woods, and COVID19 isn't going anywhere, but we are finding treatments to lessen the severity of the disease and give us some hope. However, with the seeming hopeful-success of the therapy, it can only continue to be offered if there are enough donor. Dr. Simeunovic, says they are still in need of donors.
To be considered as donors, patients who have had test-confirmed COVID-19 must be symptom free for at least 14-days. They can then be scheduled for a second nasal swab test to verify that they are free of the COVID-19 virus. If patients have been symptom free for greater than 27 days, no nasal swab is needed. Then, a donation of blood plasma from this patient can be used to treat other patients with COVID-19.
Spectrum has partnered with Versiti Blood Center for patients to donate plasma, and with Michigan State University to further this cause.
For more information on donating, CLICK ON THE VERSITI LINK ABOVE!