The Food and Drug Administration of the United States (FDA) has announced the authorization of plasma transfusions with antibodies to patients with covid-19 .
“Today the FDA has issued an authorization for the emergency use of plasma for the treatment of covid-19 in hospitalized patients as part of the agency’s fight against covid-19,” the FDA reported in a statement.
The agency bases the decision on the “available scientific evidence” by which “this product could be effective to treat covid-19 and the potential benefits are known that outweigh the potential and known risks of the same .”
“The emergency authorization of plasma transfusions is a milestone in the efforts of President Donald Trump to save lives,” said the US Secretary of Health, Alex Azar, in statements contained in the FDA statement.
Azar also stressed that the Administration supported “from the beginning” the “potential” of plasma transfusions and has stressed that its authorization for research purposes has allowed transfusions to be made to 70,000 patients in the country. “We encourage individuals who have recovered from covid-19 to donate plasma,” he added.
Last week, the president of the United States, Donald Trump , accused health officials of making policy with the possible approval of the use of plasma transfusions.
Plasma for transfusions is obtained from people who have passed COVID-19 and has already been used successfully to combat other coronaviruses such as MERS and SARS . It has also been used to treat the flu and Ebola.
Since last March the FDA has already approved plasma trials to prove their effectiveness and since then more than 60,000 plasma treatments have been performed.
The United States has recorded about 5.7 million COVID-19 cases and more than 176,000 linked deaths to date, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore.
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