If you’ve recovered from coronavirus, Colorado hospitals want your blood. It might save another patient’s life.
David Storey processes samples for COVID-19 test at Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment Laboratory Services Division in Denver, Colorado on March 14, 2020. (Pool photo by Hyoung Chang, The Denver Post)
It took less than eight hours for Dr. Kyle Annen to get the plasma — not just any blood donation, but one from a patient who had recovered from the new coronavirus and had the antibodies that might save someone else.
The clock started ticking when a physician at UCHealth University of Colorado Hospital called for help last week. A patient was severely ill and on a ventilator. The plea for “convalescent plasma” from someone who had already survived COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus, was a desperate attempt to prevent another death in the coronavirus pandemic.
Annen, who is the medical director of the blood collection center at Children’s Hospital Colorado, immediately reached out to a few people who had previously called to say they had recovered from COVID-19 and would donate blood. And she soon found one.
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A donor who had previously tested positive for the disease came to Children’s on short notice last Tuesday to take another test — and sat there, wearing a mask, waiting to find out whether that test would come back negative, as required.
Meanwhile, the hospitalized patient’s doctor was requesting permission for the transfusion from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. The federal agency is allowing patients with “serious or immediate life-threatening” COVID-19 infections to get the transfusions, but their doctors must request an emergency “investigational new drug application,” called an eIND, for every single patient.
Read more via The Colorado Sun.
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