Doctors discuss blood plasma treatment for COVD-19 as FDA puts authorization on hold

HOUSTON – As the search for an effective coronavirus treatment continues, one therapy is showing hopeful results.

According to a recent paper in The American Journal of Pathology, the use of convalescent plasma that has been collected from people who have recovered from COVID-19 can be used to treat people battling the coronavirus.

“I think it’s very promising, as do my colleagues at Mayo and frankly at many institutions across the United States,” said Dr. Jim Musser, the Chair of Department of Pathology & Genomic Medicine at Houston Methodist Hospital.

Houston Methodist Hospital is one such site conducting clinical trials and doctors there say recent results have shown promise.

“If you look at 28 days post-transfusion of the plasma, there is a significant reduction in mortality and death in those patients who received the plasma,” Musser said.

Despite the optimistic results from trials across the country, the ‘Emergency Use Authorization’ of blood plasma as a treatment by the FDA is on hold, according to a New York Times article.

The move comes after top government health officials, including Dr. Anthony Fauci and Dr. Francis Collins, the Director of the National Institutes of Health, suggested more research needs to be done.

”This does not mean that they’re not proceeding forward. It just means at this point the FDA wants additional information,” said Dr. Musser.

Although the ‘Emergency Use Authorization’ is on hold for now, that is not to say things couldn’t change after more data is collected.

”Because of this pause from the failure to issue a EUA, we just need to have additional data and put it out there for deliberations by the FDA and others who are involved,” said Musser.

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