Resident doctors of AIIMS with the help of IIT-Delhi students have developed a mobile application to track real-time COVID-19 patients in the hospital, who can become potential plasma donors 28 days after recovery along with those who have been discharged.
The app named COPAL-19 has details of patients who have already been discharged from AIIMS, those currently undergoing treatment and their blood groups so that patients who require plasma therapy can get it in time without any hassle, AIIMS RDA President, Dr Adarsh Pratap Singh, said.
"Amidst shortage of donors for plasma therapy, team of AIIMS Resident Doctors along with IIT-Delhi team developed an app to correct the mismatch between COVID-19 discharged patients and patients requiring plasma donation. It was a great initiative by Dr Abhinav Singh Verma and IIT Delhi students," Dr Singh said.
The app was launched at the premier hospital on the occasion of Doctors' Day.
Dr Verma, a resident doctor of the neurosurgery department at AIIMS, the main person behind the COPAL-19 app, said its a simple user interface application with automated donor matching.
Though it has been launched for AIIMS patients primarily for now, the app will be available on open platforms. It will be an open source code app which people from other institutions can copy and use in their hospitals, Dr Verma said.
"This app will act as a bridge between patients seeking plasma therapy and are moderately and severely symptomatic and donors who have recovered from COVID-19 and have completed 28 days post recovery," Dr Verma explained.
The app will also automatically track donors who will be eligible to donate plasma after a cycle of every 14 days.
He also referred to the case of his senior who got infected with the virus and recalled the difficulties they had to face arranging plasma for him.
"Finding plasma for him turned out to be a herculean task. We randomly contacted our friends and put it up on social media platforms, but even then arranging a plasma donor took more than 12 hours.
"We were already working on developing such an app but it was after this incident that we really pushed for it and finally launched it today," he said.
"Currently, 70 plasma donors are registered with the application," Dr Verma said.
Once the app goes live, anybody who wants to register themselves as a plasma donor can simply download the app and fill in their details in a simple format. AIIMS blood bank is also linked by a back-end so they will also get the details and help the needy patients get it.
Patients also can register themselves and get details of plasma donors matching their blood group.