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8 Apr 2020

Plans to use antibody-rich plasma to treat coronavirus patients in Belarus

Plans to use antibody-rich plasma to treat coronavirus patients in Belarus
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MINSK, 8 April (BelTA) – Belarus has plans to use convalescent plasma therapy to treat coronavirus patients, Healthcare Minister Vladimir Karanik said during a live stream on the Youtube channel of the National Press Center on 8 April, BelTA has learned.

“In the nearest future we are to start making plasma containing antibodies against the coronavirus in order to treat the most severe cases,” the minister informed. To this end, healthcare specialists will use the results of rapid tests that determine coronavirus antibodies instead of the RNA of the virus. They are undergoing testing and certification procedures now.

One of the questions asked during the live stream dealt with the immunity against the coronavirus in COVID-19 survivors. Head of Minsk City Hospital No. 6 Igor Yurkevich noted that this matter is being investigated now.  Having coronavirus leads to development of immunity, however the question is how strong the immune response will be. It is still unclear whether it depends on the severity of the disease, and whether coronavirus survivors who had mild disease can contract the virus again. “We are testing patients in order to determine antibody titers and to find out how strong these antibodies are,” he said. “I think that the international medical community and us will build a better understanding about it by the end of the epidemiological season,” Igor Yurkevich said.

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