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Indian-American infected with COVID-19 in need of plasma from survivor

Rohan Bavadekar

HOUSTON, TX-Rohan Bavadekar, a 42-year-old from Houston, is fighting for his life on a ventilator in St. Luke’s hospital in the state of Texas after being diagnosed with COVID 19. At home, his wife Manasi and three young children, who wait for Rohan’s return have also contracted the virus.

Hoping for a miracle and supporting the Bavadekar family at these testing times is SEWA- an Indian American Hindu faith group based in Texas that is lending a helping hand.

“Sewa is providing non-medical service and support to Rohan’s family by providing prepared food, groceries, medicines and emotional support,” Gitesh Desai – President, Sewa Houston Chapter, told ANI.

The Herculean task for Manasi and everyone helping Rohan is trying to find someone who has recovered from COVID-19.

The Food and Drug Administration is allowing doctors in the United States to use plasma, the yellow fluid in which blood cells are suspended, to treat very ill COVID-19 patients. Rohan’s doctors plan to use plasma from survivors, also known as convalescent-plasma therapy.

People who have recovered from the disease have antibodies that might help those still suffering from it. Dating back to the late 19th century, doctors have transfused the blood of recovered patients into those still sick with the 1918 flu, measles, polio, chickenpox, SARS, and Ebola–to varying degrees of success. And are hopeful that many like Rohan can be saved.

Rohan’s family, friends and charity organizations like SEWA are reaching out on social media looking for potential donors who they will then connect with hospitals. Each one hoping for a miracle that not only helps Rohan but all those hospitalized with the illness.

Sewa has appealed to the entire community through its 40-plus chapters in the US and via Facebook for donors of plasma to come forward for Rohan’s treatment. Sewa is very optimistic that someone’s blood will match with Rohan’s from hundreds of calls they are receiving from the country every day.

The United States continued to far outstrip other nations in new cases, with the country’s overall caseload already at 180,000 and likely to surge further in the next 24 hours. The number of U.S. deaths neared 4,000, The Washington Post reported.