Local hospital treats COVID-19 patients with plasma therapy

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MACON, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) – Coliseum Medical Centers treats the first three COVID-19 Patients with Convalescent Plasma–a process in which doctors transfuse blood plasma from fully recovered COVID-19 patients into critically ill patients.

“We enrolled some patients almost two weeks ago,” said Dr. Jennifer Hoffman.

This week, Coliseum transfused donated blood plasma from fully recovered COVID-19 patients into three critically ill patients who were hospitalized.

Dr. Jennifer Hoffman explains the process is fairly simple.

“Antibodies from someone who recovered from COVID-19 are given to someone who is still seriously ill from COVID-19,” she said.

Dr. Hoffman says after someone recovers from COVID-19, their blood contains antibodies produced by the immune system to help fight off the virus. She says,physicians hope the plasma recovered can help the immune system of someone who’s ill.

Doctors say this kind of therapy has been around for years and was successful in treating previous coronaviruses.

“SARS and MERS back when those outbreaks were going on,” Hoffman said. “It also been used to treat H1N1 influenza.”

Additional data and more plasma donations are donated before they can determine if the treatment is effective.

Hoffman tells 41NBC two of the patients were beginning to recover before the actual treatment, and she hopes it will speed their recovery time. The third patient undergoing treatment is still critically ill.

Hoffman says they will see clinical results in three to four days.

To find out more about the donation process, eligibility and locations to donate in middle Georgia, call Coliseum’s COVID-19 Plasma Phone Line at (833) 582-1971