UK HealthCare physicians may start administering convalescent plasma from recovered COVID-19 patients to those with severe COVID-19 infections. The FDA recently released guidelines allowing the investigative therapy, which may show promise in helping COVID-19 patients recover faster by offering passive immunity.
UK HealthCare and Baptist Health have partnered with the Kentucky Blood Center to collect donations from COVID-19 survivors and maintain a plasma bank to use for serious or immediately life-threatening infections.
It is possible that convalescent plasma that contains antibodies to SARS-CoV-2 (the virus that causes COVID-19) might be effective against the infection. Use of convalescent plasma has been studied in outbreaks of other respiratory infections, including the 2009-2010 H1N1 influenza virus pandemic, 2003 SARS-CoV-1 epidemic, and the 2012 MERS-CoV epidemic.
The Kentucky Blood Center will collect from donors who have had the appropriate COVID-19 testing completed and meet all other eligibility criteria.