Report: NBA soliciting plasma donations from team personnel who have recovered from COVID-19
The NBA is asking for players, coaches and team staffers who have recovered from the coronavirus to consider donating plasma as part of the “NBA Together” partnership with the National COVID-19 Convalescent Plasma Project:
Sources: The NBA’s “NBA Together” program is supporting National COVID-19 Convalescent Plasma Project of top specialists on plasma as potential treatment for coronavirus — and has asked for team individuals who have recovered to consider donating plasma.
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) March 29, 2020
The Food and Drug Administration said convalescent plasma might contain antibodies for the virus that causes COVID-19, though it acknowledged testing results have varied in terms of effectiveness:
One investigational treatment being explored for COVID-19 involves the use of convalescent plasma collected from recovered COVID-19 patients. It is possible that convalescent plasma that contains antibodies to SARS-CoV-2 (the virus that causes COVID-19) might be effective against the infection. Use of convalescent plasma has been studied in outbreaks of other respiratory infections, including the 2009-2010 H1N1 influenza virus pandemic, 2003 SARS-CoV-1 epidemic, and the 2012 MERS-CoV epidemic. Although promising, convalescent plasma has not been shown to be effective in every disease studied. It is therefore important to determine through clinical trials, before routinely administering convalescent plasma to patients with COVID-19, that it is safe and effective to do so. Investigators wishing to study the use of convalescent plasma are encouraged to submit requests to FDA for investigational use under the traditional IND regulatory pathway (21 CFR 312).
Of course, the coronavirus has directly impacted personnel throughout the NBA. Numerous players have tested positive, though Rudy Gobert, Donovan Mitchell and Christian Wood have all since been cleared by medical professionals.
Players and coaches around the NBA have urged the public to take precautionary measures in an effort to curb the spread of this virus. A good number of players have been doing their part financially in order to help those in need during this pandemic.
Getting plasmas from those who have recovered could be a critical act in terms of testing, especially because convalescent plasmas are not readily available. Let’s hope this NBA initiative is helpful.