Piedmont Regional Health is working with the Mayo Clinic and the American Red Cross in providing an experimental treatment in the effort to combat COVID-19. Piedmont is joining other healthcare facilities and systems around the nation in using convalescent plasma from patients who have recovered from the virus to treat those suffering from it.
Dr. Amy Hajari Case is Medical Director for Pulmonary and Critical Research at Piedmont Health Care
“ That plasma can be administered as a transfusion into severe or critically ill COVID-19 patients,” Hajari case said. “What we think is that giving some of another person’s antibodies that are already developed may help that person who is hospitalized with COVID-19, may help them to fight the virus more effectively before their own immune system has had a chance to develop and antibody response to the disease.”
Unfortunately, as the number of coronavirus cases spike around the nation, the sought after substance is in short supply.
“The demand for those convalescent plasma units across the country has increased very significantly and so the supply does not meet the demand currently. The turnaround time has increased significantly for those requested units.”
While the effects have not yet been proven, researchers hope those antibodies will help others recover from the disease. Donors are asked to visit RedCrossBlood.org to donate.
Donors can donate several times while the antibodies remain elevated in the blood.