Iraqi physician looks to plasma treatment for covid-19 relief
Immunologist Ali Salam Abdullah and a smiling patient held up a blood bag containing yellow liquid which may be the key in lowering Iraq’s death rate from coronavirus.
The liquid is blood plasma, rich in antibodies from a recently recovered patient, and Dr Abdullah has used it to treat severe cases of covid-19.
He is hoping that the new treatment will receive ministerial approval. There are concerns about the lack of donors.
“Among all recovered patients, only three percent (of eligible donors) volunteer,” he said. “… If half of those recovered patients came, we would have enough (plasma) to treat patients in Basra until the end of the year.”
The effectiveness of plasma as a coronavirus treatment is still unknown, however, health authorities have permitted its use under certain conditions.
According to Iraqi health authorities there have been over 34,000 cases nationwide and approximately 1,250 deaths.