JAMMU: Unable to meet the requirement of oxygen for the ailing COVID-19 patients here, the GMC Jammu has not so far been able to start convalescent plasma therapy as a standard treatment for COVID-19 patients admitted in associated hospitals.The good news, however, is that the GMC Srinagar and SKIMS Soura have already started therapy and are achieving excellent results.In this therapy, plasma could be donated by any person who has recovered from COVID-19 and must have tested negative after 28 days of recovery time. This is transfer of readymade immunity against the deadly virus in patients suffering from COVID-19 and who are sick or critical.
Since there is no approved breakthrough drug and till the time the vaccine becomes available, the only ray of hope in this direction seems to be convalescent plasma therapy for COVID-19 patients.
MP, 3 Ex-Health Ministers to review GMC working todayFollowing the reports of unsatisfactory treatment to COVID-19 patients at Government Medical College (GMC) and its associated hospitals, Jammu -Poonch Constituency Member Parliament Jugal Kishore Sharma has directed Principal GMC to organise a review meeting on Friday at 3:00 PM. Besides the MP, three Ex-Health Ministers including Sham Lal Sharma, D K Manyal and Bali Bhagat shall give suggestions for better care to patients.This delegation under the chairmanship of MP Jugal Kumar Sharma will also hold meeting with all HODs as people are lodging numerous complaints against the administration of GMC and its associated hospitals.
In a major achievement, Sher-e-Kashmir Institute of Medical Sciences, (SKIMS) Soura, a COVID designated hospital in Srinagar, has conducted its first successful plasma therapy for the virus affected patients after getting permission. The SKIMS took to therapy as part of standard treatment protocol on July 10, 2020 after necessary regulatory and ICMR collaboration. The hospital started Convalescent Plasma Therapy (CPT) for critically sick patients as one of the modalities of supportive treatment of the deadly infection. As per the Director SKIMS, Srinagar, very encouraging initial results have been received as they could save the lives of critically ill three patients of COVID-19, till date who could otherwise not have been saved possibly.Similarly, GMC Srinagar has received approval for the use of Convalescent Plasma Therapy (CPT) in moderately and severely sick COVID-19 patients amidst their growing numbers on July 30, 2020 and as a result patients admitted at Chest Diseases Hospital -GMCs Srinagar could soon start treating sick patients with CPT, as per its Principal.However, in-spite of the established advanced upgraded blood bank and Plasma Bank, which is fully functional with fully trained technical human resource available at GMC Jammu, the convalescent plasma therapy could not be started for critically sick patients of COVID-19. They could recover otherwise but are left to the mercy of God to die.Further, when the Government claims to have spent cores in creating and upgrading infrastructure of Blood Bank of GMC Jammu and making all high end equipment and machinery, then why GMC Jammu has failed to start the much needed therapy for patients of Jammu Region.Under the collaboration, ICMR is ready to do any amount of funding for setting up the therapy as standard protocol, then why the authorities have failed to take up the same is not understandable. Establishing this form of standard therapy should have been the priority but, the silly excuse given by GMC authorities for not able to establish it yet is that, ‘Institute is encountering less sick patients and deaths in comparison to Srinagar’ is not acceptable and totally non-scientific.It means, GMC Jammu authorities are waiting for more peaks to come in Jammu and to have high mortality recorded, then only they will wake up.On October 1, 1,093 positive cases were reported from Jammu and Kashmir taking the total cases to 76,163. (692 from Jammu and 401 from Kashmir). Out of the total cases, 58,552 people have been recovered while and 1,198 died. Currently 16,413 cases are active here. There must be an urgent call to wake up GMC Jammu to make an effort in this direction in the interest of Jammu region.On August 10, as the COVID-19 cases started surging in the region, the Institutional Ethics Committee (IEC) of Government Medical College and Hospital (GMC&H), Jammu, had accorded sanction for Convalescent Plasma Therapy for moderate to severe patients of deadly infections. But all in vain.
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