Tuesday, March 28

Woman, who fought Covid at home and won, steps out to donate plasma

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A young woman from Howrah, who has been cured of Covid-19 infection, donated her plasma on Monday, making her the 10th donor in the state for clinical trial on the efficacy of plasma therapy. Amrita Panda is the first donor who did not need hospital care but got cured in home isolation. A highly motivated 26-year-old also did not need any counselling for the donation. In fact, she searched and approached people on her own with the query if she could donate.
“I read in newspapers that plasma from a Covid-cured person can help the infected undergoing treatment. Since I am healthy, I was confident that I could be a donor. That is when I started searching where and whom to approach,” Panda told TOI.

She got connected with Sayantan Chakraborty, a young cancer doctor who had donated plasma, on a social media platform. Chakraborty got her connected to Sandip Paul, scientist at CSIR-IICB (Indian Institute of Chemical Biology), one of the investigators of the trial. “I am lucky that my plasma will be utilised for a trial that could benefit thousands. I would also appeal to the young and healthy Covid winners to come forward. Let us do it for the doctors and scientists who are putting their heads together for the trial,” said Panda, who is preparing for state civil service examination.

A resident of Shibpur in Howrah, Panda had tested positive on May 11, along with four other family members while results of two others were inconclusive. Apart from her 82-year-old grandfather, who had to be admitted at MR Bangur Hospital, the rest stayed in home isolation, in consultation with health department officials. Now her grandfather, too, is back home, cured.

“We are extremely proud of these highly motivated young Covid winners. Out of the 10 donors, eight are healthcare workers,” said Prasun Bhattacharya, head of the immunohematology and blood transfusion unit of the Medical College Hospital, Kolkata (MCH), where plasma is being collected.

A collaborative venture of Council of Scientific & Industrial Research and the state government, the clinical trial on passive immunization using convalescent plasma is going on at ID Hospital. “Apart from healthcare workers, we are hopeful that more people like Monami and Amrita will come forward,” added Bhattacharya.
Source:Times of India

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