CHENNAI: The Tamil Nadu health department is preparing a list of donors for the convalescent plasma therapy to treat COVID-19 patients, even as the government is awaiting the final nod from the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) to commence the trials as total confirmed cases have gone up to 1520.
The health authorities have already identified five people who have expressed their willingness to donate and the process of 'motivating' others is on, officials said.
"Five among the 13 people who were recently discharged from Kilpauk Government Medical College Hospital here, after being successfully treated for COVID-19, have agreed to donate their plasma while four others do not meet the criteria for donation," said Dr P Vasantha, Dean KMC.
"We are motivating others to donate," she added.
Further, over 23 people, including eight women, who were admitted with symptoms of Coronavirus were treated and discharged in two batches from the KMC.
According to the dean, those who were discharged have been strictly advised extended home quarantine for 14 days and not to mingle with their family members for now.
"Since we have their phone numbers we enquire about their health conditions on a daily basis. Those who are willing could donate their plasma, she added. As to the treatment at the hospital, she said apart from the regular dose of medicines, they were given food, did yoga and meditation. Individuials who were cured of the deadly virus fondly recalled the care shown to them by the doctors.
"The doctors checked us daily and personally verified if we had cough or sneezing. The medical team took good care of us.
"We got our tea, food and sundal (protein-rich supplement) on time and they encouraged us with kind words," said city resident Mohamed Nazir, who was admitted to KMC on April 1 and discharged two weeks later after two successive negative tests.
"I got the feeling that my end is imminent in a week or two when doctors said I had Coronavirus.
Though I did not show any symptoms, doctors who tested me twice said I was positive on April 1," says Shaik Mohmmed, one of the Tablighi Jamaat congregation attendees in Delhi who volunteered for testing.
"Others (who attended the conference) were taken to the Rajiv Gandhi Government General Hospital for treatment," he said and added "140 people were already at the GH when I got myself admitted.
"The doctors and nurses were very empathetic to COVID-19 patients and encouraged them with soothing words that they would be discharged if they tested negative twice," he said.
"They allowed me to recite from the Quran, meditate,read online newspapers and checked my health conditions daily. Finally, after two negative results, I was discharged on April 16," he said.
The approach by the doctors and nurses and their kind words gave him confidence to regain health, he added.