Health officials propose collection of convalescent plasma at hospitals

Lim Chang-won Reporter() | Posted : April 8, 2020, 16:24 | Updated : April 8, 2020, 16:24

[Yonhap Photo]

SEOUL -- For the treatment of serious patients infected with a novel coronavirus, South Korean health authorities proposed the periodic collection of convalescent plasma at hospitals after a hospital research team cured two patients with plasma infusion without any severe adverse effects.

The Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC) said on Wednesday that hospitals would be allowed to collect convalescent plasma from April 14. KCDC Deputy Director Kwon Jun-wook promised to work out specific guidelines through clinical discussions with experts.

Blood plasma is used to treat a wide variety of medical disorders. Because the effectiveness of blood plasma treatment is not yet well-founded, it is mainly used to treat new infectious diseases, which do not have any clear cure. Studies in China found that plasma was able to reduce the spread of the coronavirus.

In an experimental method, a research team at Yonsei University's Severance Hospital has used plasma donated by cured men in their 20s to treat two critical patients. Choi Jun-yong, a medical professor involved in the infusion of convalescent plasma, proposed that a system should be established to secure enough plasma and efficiently manage donors.
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