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Cord blood will be used to treat Covid-19 patients: Mamata Banerjee

Cord blood is found in the blood vessels of the placenta and the umbilical cord, and collected after a baby’s umbilical cord is cut after birth. It contains blood-forming stem cells that are used in treating certain blood and immune system disorders.

By: Express News Service | Kolkata | Updated: August 7, 2020 2:45:21 pm
west bengal coronavirus updates, mamata banerjee, west bengal covid, west bengal covid treatment, cord blood treatment of covid patients in west bengal, indian express news Mamata Banerjee said 87.6 per cent of the Covid-19 fatalities the state were a result of comorbidities, or underlying health problems. (File)

Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee Thursday said cord blood would be used to treat Covid-19 patients, in addition to plasma treatment. Moreover, psychology students would be inducted for the tele counselling of Covid-19 patients and their families, she added.

“We already have a plasma bank where blood is donated by recovered coronavirus patients. We also have a cord blood bank. This cord blood bank can also be utilised for the treatment of the Covid-19 patients,” the CM told reporters.

Cord blood is found in the blood vessels of the placenta and the umbilical cord, and collected after a baby’s umbilical cord is cut after birth. It contains blood-forming stem cells that are used in treating certain blood and immune system disorders.

Banerjee said 87.6 per cent of the Covid-19 fatalities the state were a result of comorbidities, or underlying health problems. “One should not ignore if he/she develops Covid-19 symptoms but go for tests. Of the patients, 70.3 per cent have been discharged from hospital. So don’t hide if you have symptoms. Covid-19 is curable,” said the Chief Minister.

Chief Secretary Rajiva Sinha said the government was putting in place a comprehensive Covid management system to handle the spike in cases over the past month. It will be manned by 96 doctors round the clock. “We are putting in place a Covid management system in the state. Every evening at 9 pm, all state government-run hospitals and private medical facilities will update the number of their critical patients, mild and asymptomatic patients. The statistics will be made available in the public domain so that anyone can know the details.”

Sinha said people would get to know all relevant details such as saturation levels, the prevailing situation, patients’ gender, age and other health-related information by just clicking on the website.

“Covid patients can also call up the direct telemedicine number 033-23576001 for any medical help. A five-member team of medical experts has been constituted, with a senior biologist who will visit testing labs and verify if testing is legitimate or not,” he added.

The senior official said the administration had sanctioned 500 new posts of house staff for treating Covid-19 patients. They would be recruited soon on the basis of walk-in interviews, he added.

Sinha told reporters that over 500 beds had been added to the state and private Covid-19 facilities since July 31, taking the total to 11,560. There were 10,000 more beds at safe homes for patients with mild symptoms or those who are asymptomatic, he added, calling it a unique initiative. He said the government had conducted more than 25,000 tests in the city, 80 per cent of which were RT-PCR and the rest rapid antigen tests.

Meanwhile, Banerjee warned that no one should impersonate representatives of Covid-19 test centres, and urged people to get their samples tested only at government-authorised laboratories. Last Friday, three men were arrested in Kolkata for allegedly duping a 57-year-old bank manager with a fake Covid test report.

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