The NHS Blood and Transparent (NHSBT) in the UK is communicating with those who have recovered from the COVID-19 to donate their blood as they plan to use it for a possible plasma treatment.
The process which involves a rigorous approval process has been used more than 100 years ago during the Spanish flu epidemic and more recently for Ebola and Sars. The hope of the Plasma (the liquid portion of blood) is to help clear the virus in others as the recovered victims are immune and have built up their antibodies which can attack the virus.
Several groups in the UK have been looking into using blood plasma, according to Prof. Sir Robert Lechler, President of the Academy of Medical Science and Executive Director of King’s Health Partners said, ” I would be disappointed if we weren’t able to see some patients given this form of therapy within a couple of weeks. Let’s hope that the NHSBT national trial gets into gear really quickly.”
Scientists have said the plasma therapy is not or won’t be a magic bullet but will help until a possible vaccine is found. As the world combats the coronavirus, any form of procedure which will be needed to slow or pause a possible spread is needed at this point (the coronavirus has put both the economical world and social life on a stand still).