The Iowa Department of Public Health announced three additional confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Story County on Monday morning, bringing the total number of cases in the county to 25. One of the county’s confirmed cases has also become the first patient in Ames to receive convalescent plasma to fight COVID-19.
Of the new cases, one is an adult aged 18 to 40, and two are middle-aged adults between 41 and 60 years old.
Steve Sullivan, spokesman for Mary Greeley Medical Center, confirmed two of the newly-confirmed cases were tested at McFarland Clinic, and one was tested outside of the county.
In addition, LifeServe Blood Center announced on Monday the first patient in Ames, who is currently being treated for “serious COVID-19 symptoms,” has received convalescent plasma, according to a media release.
LifeServe Blood Center has partnered with Mary Greeley Medical Center to provide the treatment, and is “actively working with the FDA and area hospitals to collect convalescent plasma from healthy, recovered COVID-19 patients.”
According to the release, convalescent plasma is being used as an “investigative treatment” for novel coronavirus patients, and uses plasma from fully recovered patients who have antibodies in their plasma which fight the virus. The treatment is being trialled, before final scientific trials have been completed, “to determine its effectiveness.”
“The initial trials are promising but the need for qualified donors is critical to determine the on-going effectiveness,” the release said.
Qualified plasma donors are those who have received a positive laboratory confirmation of the virus, successfully recovered, and have a physician referral document. Those who have received a physician diagnosis but have not received a positive laboratory test may be eligible for antibody screening.
As of Monday, 606 Story County residents had been tested for the novel coronavirus, and of the 25 confirmed cases, 16 people had fully recovered.
In total, the confirmed cases in Story County include 10 adults between 18 and 40, six middle-aged adults between 41 and 60, six older adults between 61 and 80, and three elderly over the age of 81.
Throughout the state, as of Monday, there had been 5,868 total confirmed cases and 127 deaths, according to the Iowa Department of Public Health; 38,150 people had been tested and 2,021 confirmed cases had fully recovered.