Convalescent blood plasma for COVID-19 treatment

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Indonesian Red Cross (PMI) shows a donated blood bag

Vaccines and drugs against COVID-19 are currently being researched and developed. Scientists are also trying other alternatives that are more practical and brief by using the blood plasma of patients recovering from COVID-19 as a ‘medicine’.

The Indonesian Red Cross (PMI) for Jakarta region, expressed willingness to collect blood of recovered COVID-19 patients for trial of treatment using convalescent blood plasma as proposed in Indonesia by Eijkman Molecular Biology Institute.

“We are ready to collect the blood plasma, yet we are currently awaiting official guidelines apart from a minimum requirement of two weeks after their symptoms resolve and only if they then test negative for COVID-19,” Salimar Salim, head of the transfusions unit at PMI Jakarta, expounded on Friday, May 1.

“The collected plasma will be used [as part of treatments] for patients developing severe symptoms,” said one of the team researchers Robert Sinto in a written statement

Salim revealed that PMI Jakarta was currently also forging cooperation with the hospitals since “they have the data of patients that had recovered from the disease.”

PMI Jakarta to collect the blood plasma using seven collection devices that they have, then separate plasma from blood using the plasmapheresis method.

For the next step, the plasma will be tested by Eijkman at some Biosafety Level 3 laboratories to ensure the effectiveness, safety, and security of COVID-19 patients.

On the other hand, a team of convalescent plasma researchers from Cipto Mangunkusumo Hospital (RSCM) and the University of Indonesia’s Faculty of Medicine hoped COVID-19 patients who have been declared healthy are willing to donate their blood plasma.

“The collected plasma will be used [as part of treatments] for patients developing severe symptoms,” said one of the team researchers Robert Sinto in a written statement on Thursday, April 30.

As for the requirements to be a donor are males aged over 18 years old and have been recovered from the new coronavirus. They should have to be confirmed from the two negative swab test results.

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