Manatee Memorial Hospital Starts Clinical Trials for Treatment of Patients With COVID-19

Coconut Telegraph

SRQ DAILY FRESHLY SQUEEZED CONTENT EVERY MORNING THURSDAY APR 23, 2020

Responding to the unprecedented challenge of fighting coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), the U.S. Government is supporting a national Expanded Access Clinical Trial Program to collect and provide convalescent plasma to patients in need across the country. Blood (plasma) from recovered COVID-19 patients contains antibodies that may help fight the disease. Manatee Memorial Hospital has joined this clinical trial program coordinated by the Mayo Clinic and American Red Cross to collect and administer COVID-19 convalescent plasma to eligible patients.

Eliot Godofsky, MD, Infectious Disease and the hospital’s Clinical Investigator, will oversee the clinical trials at Manatee Memorial Hospital. Dr. Godofsky and hospital staff will work together on the screening of recovered COVID-19 positive patients to be part of the program collection, the administration of the plasma and trial results. The hospital will work collaboratively with industry, academic, government partners and hospitals throughout the country on our results.

Only eligible hospitalized patients referred by their health care provider will participate in receiving convalescent plasma. Hospitalized patients are eligible to receive convalescent plasma if:
They are 18+ years of age
They have laboratory-confirmed diagnosis of infection with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), the virus that causes COVID-19
They are admitted to an acute care facility for the treatment of COVID-19 complications
They have severe or life-threatening COVID-19, or judged by the treating provider to be at high risk of progression to severe or life-threatening disease
There is informed consent provided by the patient or healthcare proxy

“COVID-19 convalescent plasma (CCP) has the potential to offer effective therapy for patients with severe or life-threatening infection, due to the current pandemic utilizing healthcare systems, already in place. The rate-limiting step in the process is the availability of blood type-matched plasma from COVID-19 recovered donors. It is critical that persons recovered from documented or presumptive COVID-19 infection contact their local blood bank or the American Red Cross to be screened for antibody levels indicative of their ability, to be a plasma donor. Individual donors are able to typically provide enough plasma for three doses of CCP. There is no better way for a community to step up and help take care of its’ own,” stated Eliot Godofsky, MD.

Note: COVID-19 convalescent plasma has not yet been demonstrated to provide clinical benefit in patients affected by this disease. It's not known if this treatment will or will not help those with COVID-19 or if it will have any harmful effects, but this is one of the only treatments that we have at present.

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