Cuba has started to collect blood donations from COVID-19 convalescents for the processing of hyperimmune plasma to treat cases in critical and serious condition.
Speaking at the daily media briefing on the situation of the pandemic in the country, Dr. Francisco Duran, Chief of Epidemiology of the Ministry of Public Health, said that the provinces of Cienfuegos, Villa Clara, Sancti Spiritus, Matanzas and Ciego de Avila are already working on the plan and that Camaguey is to be added soon.
Convalescents of COVID-19 willing to donate their blood must be immunocompetent people, have completed the required recovery time of not less than 21 days, and be physically and emotionally fit.
The plasma removed from the blood of a person who has recovered from a disease, then is transfused into a patient still battling it.
The expert said that the medical procedure is being applied in other countries of the world and that after the collection of 17 donations in the country, the plasma is being applied as part of the new coronavirus treatment protocols on the island with encouraging results.
Dr. Duran recalled that this practice was used during the Ebola epidemic in West Africa. According to other sources, the practice goes as far back as the Spanish Flu of 1918. More recently, the procedure has been used in patients with SARS, H1N1, and more.
For more details on Saturday media briefing update on COVID-19 go below.