New Delhi: A plasma bank to treat novel coronavirus started functioning in the national capital Thursday. Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said that COVID-19 patients can donate their plasma 14 days after recovery. Arvind Kejriwal addressed an online media and said the eligibility for being a plasma donor is ‘very strict’. He hoped that with this plasma bank the number of COVID-19 deaths will decrease in the national capital. Kejriwal later inaugurated the plasma bank. The Delhi government has set up the plasma bank at the state-run Institute of Liver and Biliary Sciences (ILBS).
Plasma donation in organised manner
“Today, we have started the plasma bank and some people have also donated. We all know there is no vaccine for novel coronavirus yet. However, plasma therapy seems to be quite helpful for COVID-19 patients,” Kejriwal told reporters. “It (plasma donation) was happening in a scattered way. So the idea was to bring it at one place in an organised manner,” the Delhi Chief Minister added.
“There are strict guidelines for eligible donors. I would urge those people who have recovered from COVID-19 to come forward. They can donate plasma to other patients,” he further stated.
Rules for donors
The chief minister also explained the rules for plasma donors. He informed that the donor will also be given an appreciation letter.
“A government doctor will contact the person willing to donate his plasma. Basic details regarding his medical history and other eligibility requirements will be obtained. Thereafter, the person can come to ILBS to donate his plasma. The government will also bear transportation expenses,” informed Kejriwal.
About eligibility parameters for donors, Kejriwal said that those aged between 18 and 60 and weighing not less than 50 kg can donate their plasma. He informed women, who have been pregnant, cannot donate plasma. He added that people, who take insulin and their blood sugar level is not stable, also cannot be donors. Those, who have heart, kidney and lung disease, are not eligible to donate their plasma. People having a complaint of hypertension also cannot donate,” informed Kejriwal.
Plasma therapy involves taking antibodies from the blood of a person who has recovered from COVID-19. Then the plasma is transfused into a coronavirus infected patient to help kick-start the immune system to fight the infection.