NEW DELHI: Kerala obtained approval from ICMR to start clinical trial of plasma therapy to treat COVID-19 patients.
This would mean passively injecting severe patients with plasma of patients who have recovered from coronavirus as their body would have produced antibodies to fight the infection.
Recently, ICMR was in the process of drafting research protocols for convalescent plasma therapy as a potential form of treatment for coronavirus positive patients.
“We have to seek approval from Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) before initiating the trials among patients," said Manoj Murhekar, Director of National Institute of Epidemiology, ICMR had said on Thursday.
Meanwhile, Kerala has recorded one of the highest number of coronavirus cases in the country.
Also, suicide in Kerala increased in last couple of days due to unavailability of liquor for the current lockdown, as Health officials have claimed. Like other states in the country, total prohibition on sale of liquor has been imposed in Kerala, too, on account of the on-going nationwide lockdown, which ends on April 14,2020. But five people, who were identified by doctors as liquor addicted, committed suicide in the first five days of the lockdown.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi had announced a 21-day-long nationwide lockdown to check the spread of the novel coronavirus. Surprisingly, the number of suicides in Kerala, which literacy rate is highest among the states and UTs in the country, has been increasing since the first day of the lockdown. As per reports, atleast five alcohol addicted people killed themselves and some others tried to kill themselves.
Kerala Health Minister K K Shailaja said to media that the facility of treatment for liquor addicts have been arranged at family health centres and primary health centres where psychiatrists are also available. “Our major government hospitals have been designated for COVID-19. Serious cases can be referred to district or taluk level hospitals and 20 beds have been set aside in each district for liquor addicts,” said the Health Minister.