Plasma Therapy for Gurugram’s Covid-19 patients
District Admininstration Gurugram is actively spearheading the plasma donation drive in Gurugram to create a robust plasma bank for Covid positive residents in need.
As the world awaits with bated breath for the Covid-19 vaccine, Plasma Therapy is becoming an integral part of treating patients who are testing positive for Covid-19. The District Administration Gurugram, along with the support of local organizations & NGOs, has geared up its plasma donation drive to help treat covid positive patients in the city.
Convalescent plasma collection
When a person contracts a Virus like COVID-19, his/her Immune System produces antibodies to fight the Virus. The liquid part of the blood or ‘Plasma’ containing these infection-fighting antibodies is called ‘Convalescent Plasma’. This antibody-rich Plasma can be collected from a recovered person and transfused to a COVID Patient who is still fighting the Virus as it provides a boost to the Immune System of the sick patient and helps in speeding up the recovery process.
“The plasma donation drive started around a month back wherein we tied up various associations like the Rotary Blood Bank, Red Cross Society, few NGOs and a back-end team of volunteers,” says District Commissioner of Gurugram, Amit Khatri.
“The donation pace has picked up over the last fortnight but still it’s a long way to go. We have to reach out and motivate our covid recovered patients to come forward and do not fear donating plasma. We recognize them as our covid warriors and we appreciate their initiatives in helping boost the availability of plasma for anybody who needs it.”
The plasma donation procedure
The donation process is simple and takes about 2 hours of the donor. Medical Records including COVID Positive & Negative RT- PCR Reports of the Donor are checked by a Medical Officer. If eligible, the medical screening & general physical examination is done and blood samples are taken for few pertinent tests such as CBC, total plasma proteins, antibodies and to detect the presence of any transmissible infections. If all the vital parameters are clear, the plasma is then harvested on a Cell Separator Equipment using the Apheresis Techniquein which only Plasma will be taken out and rest of the blood will be transferred back into your body simultaneously, following all ICMR Guidelines.
Myths & Facts
Many covid recovered patients are hesitant to donate their plasma due to unfound fear and myths. Plasma Donation is a totally safe procedure and performed on a fully automated state-of-the-art machine as per WHO and ICMR guidelines. All sterility precautions are followed very strictly. All the kits and consumables used are fresh, absolutely sterile and meant for Single Use.
Plasma Donation has no negative effect at all on your body’s immune defense system. Your Immune System has developed Memory Cells which will rapidly make new antibodies as soon as Corona Virus tries to re-infect you. Donating Plasma does not decrease your COVID Antibodies levels.
Only one component of the blood called plasma is donated. The remaining blood is returned to the blood donor’s body. There are no major side effects after Plasma donation. Full recovery takes place within 48 hours. After 15 days of Convalescent Plasma donation, donor can again donate plasma.
Eligibility for Convalescent Plasma Donation
a) Male & Female of age: 18 to 60 Years
b) Nulliparous Female (i.e. Female who has Never given birth to a child)
c) Weight: >55Kg
d) Hemoglobin : >12.5 gm/dl
e) Prior Diagnosis of COVID-19 documented by a Laboratory Test (RT-PCR) with Symptomatic Disease (at least Fever and Cough)
f) Complete Resolution of Symptoms at least 28 days prior to donation OR Complete Resolution of Symptoms at least 14 days prior to donation and One Negative Real Time PCR test for COVID-19 from Nasopharyngeal Swab.
All other eligibility criterias will be checked and advised by the medical officer.