COLUMBUS, Ohio — The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center took a major step in treating novel coronavirus, known medically as COVID-19.
On Monday, a team performed a transfusion of the first patient in central and northern Ohio with plasma from a recovered COVID-19 patient.
A new federal emergency investigational drug application process for academic institutions like the OSU Wexner Medical Center made it possible to evaluate this kind of transfusion.
The transfusion is regarded as ‘compassionate use’ therapy.
The procedure is one of several efforts in the fight against the coronavirus.
Nationwide, medical experts are moving to use what they call convalescent plasma to treat to people who are ill with life-threatening COVID-19 disease. As it turns out, people who recover from COVID-19, have antibodies that work to attack the virus.
The director of Transfusion Medicine at the OSU Wexner Medical Center, Dr. Scott Scrape, said the therapy could go a long way toward shortening the length of illness with COVID-19.
“Our new program involves a routine blood donation process to collect the plasma that will be given to critically-ill COVID-19 patients to fight this infection,” he said.
The development and procedure hold great promise which is why the OSU Wexner Medical Center will become part of a national consortium that will coordinate access to convalescent plasma for patients across the country.
Convalescent plasma can only be collected from donors who meet strict guidelines. Eligibility would be confirmed on the day of donation. Con Requirements for collecting convalescent plasma requires that donors meet the regular blood donor eligibility. There are some additional criteria including:
- Prior diagnosis of COVID-19, with lab test documentation
- No symptoms at least 28 days before donation
- Negative for HLA antibodies. These are proteins that could be in a patient’s blood that could interfere with the transfusion.
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