Chandigarh PGI to inject hope with plasma therapy trials in critical Covid patients
The trials will take place with permission of patients, and will include those who have completed 28 days of recoveryUpdated: Apr 14, 2020 00:18 IST
The Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research (PGIMER) is planning to start convalescent plasma therapy for Covid patients, wherein blood plasma from those who have recovered from the infection will be infused into critical patients.
PGIMER director Dr Jagat Ram said: “PGI is planning to start a trial of blood plasma therapy, wherein plasma from the blood of a recovered Covid-19 patient will be taken and its anti-bodies transfused into another critically ill patient. This will boost the patients immune system which could help fight the virus.”
He said paper work for the therapy has been started and they will soon begin trials.
Explaining the therapy, a doctor from PGI’s blood transfusion department, not wishing to be named, said, “We all know that a recovered patient has developed antibodies. In this trial, blood plasma will be taken from one who has recovered from Covid. This plasma, which is expected to contain antibodies specific to the novel coronavirus, will be transfused into a critically sick patient to boost recovery.”
He said only those patients will be included in the plasma therapy trial who have completed 28 days of recovery and it cannot be done without their permission.
He said trials for the investigational new drug will begin after taking due clearances. “We are making a project proposal to be sent to drug controller general of India (DCGI) for clearance. Apart from this, the Indian council of medical research (ICMR) has also sought entries from hospital that wish to start the trial. We, too, will also write to ICMR,” he said.
It will take at least two weeks to get all clearances, he added. “The four departments – internal medicine, blood transfusion, virology and preventive and social health – are working together for this. We are positive this therapy will help critically ill patients,” he said.