How did we rapidly implement a convalescent plasma program?
Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, the use of convalescent plasma as a possible treatment has been explored. Here we describe our experience as the first U.S. organization creating a COVID-19 convalescent plasma program to support its use through the single-patient emergency investigational new drug, the National Expanded Access Program, and multiple randomized controlled trials. Within weeks, we were able to distribute more than 8000 products, scale up collections to more than 4000 units per week, meet hospital demand, and support randomized controlled trials to evaluate the efficacy of convalescent plasma treatment. This was through strategic planning; redeployment of staff; and active engagement of hospital, community, and public health partners. Our partners helped with donor recruitment, testing, patient advocacy, and patient availability. The program will continue to evolve as we learn more about optimizing the product. Remaining issues to be resolved are antibody titers, dose, and at what stage of disease to transfuse.
Budhai, A; Wu, AA; Hall, L; Strauss, D; Paradiso, S; Alberigo, J; Hillyer, CD; Jett, B; Tobian, AAR; Bloch, EM; Sachais, BS; Shaz, BH
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