My hero is my husband Jovica who is selflessly performing his job every day. He is a deliverer for the delivery company @DelCo Macedonia, which itself with its 34 offices throughout the country is providing help and has a significant contribution in fighting against this crisis.
And while we are all seating at home, he is on field every day and selflessly works so that everyone can receive their shipment fast and on time, especially in case of delivering food for those in need, delivery of medicine and the much needed medical equipment.
My friend Marija is caring out the most difficult tasks. As a nurse, she takes most of the workload when taking care about patients, which is even more difficult in the pandemic time.
She is working endless shifts, must wear a special protective equipment, which is very hard to keep on while working. She is a great supporter to all patients. She has no time to fear or any sadness, she must keep going and taking care about the others!
Today, the representatives of the Foundation for fighting the consequences of the COVID 19 pandemic from Skopje, visited the JRS centre to donate protective equipment, i.e. face masks for the protégés of the JRS centre. The providing of protective equipment was supported by Stay Safe Macedonia. The JRS centre provides protection and accommodation of migrants, injured people, women and children, and it also provides medical help for the protégés and legal help. All interested citizens, who wish to provide additional donations can do so on https://jrs.net/en/country/macedonia/
We thank the team of JRS centre for their hospitality and to Stay Safe Macedonia for the help in providing the donation.
Foundation: Since you already defeated the disease, can you please shortly tell us which are the most common symptoms of COVID-19?
D-r Boshkovski: The most common symptoms are same as the general symptoms of all virus diseases, which are lethargy, fatigue, reduced appetite, dry cough, reduced sense of smell and taste, headache. In rare cases a more serious immunological reaction of the organism to the virus can occur, such as: high temperature, fever, intense sweating …Very often the disease can start by affecting the gastrointestinal tract with diarrhea, nausea and vomiting same as with other abdominal viruses. Luckily, in most of the cases the patients are just asymptomatic carriers of the virus and have very mild symptoms.
Foundation: What motivated you to register for donating convalescent plasma?
D-r Boshkovski: Most of all humanity. The nobleness of helping those in need, to save a human life. That is the motivation that guided me in choosing my profession as well, and later on during my studies and specialization.
Foundation: Can you shortly explain us the procedure for donating and where can people register to become donors?
D-r Boshkovski: All those persons that were sick with COVID-19 or were just asymptomatic carriers confirmed with positive molecular COVID-19 test can be considered potential donators of convalescent plasma. Additionally they need to fulfill specific health and technical criteria, for which more detailed information can be found on the web page of the Institute of transfusion medicine. The procedure itself is safe, painless and short. This could be another incentive for all those that want to donate, do not hesitate and do it.
Foundation: What kind of advice could you give for people with regard to the pandemics?
D-r Boshkovski: They should be responsible, they should respect all prescribed preventive measures, guard their health and the health of those close to them. It is those closes to us that are most vulnerable to the health complications caused by this virus. Only with collective consciousness and responsibility we can win this war against the virus.
Convalescent plasma is the liquid part of blood that is collected from patients who have recovered from the novel coronavirus disease, COVID-19, caused by the virus SARS-CoV-2. COVID-19 patients develop antibodies in the blood against the virus. Antibodies are proteins that might help fight the infection.
Convalescent plasma is being investigated for the treatment of COVID-19 because there is no approved treatment for this disease and there is some information that suggests it might help some patients recover from COVID-19. *1
The treatment consists of transfusing convalescent plasma to sick patients to boost their immunity and ability to fight the disease. Plasma transfusion is also used to purify antibodies to make a COVID-19 specific medicinal product (immunoglobin) as short-term alternative to vaccines. This product is given as a prophylactic injection to patients, vulnerable persons and healthcare workers, or as a treatment. The efficacy of these treatments is being investigated worldwide, including in an EU research project funded by Horizon 2020. Preliminary results are promising while results from full clinical trials are forthcoming. *2
Convalescent plasma can be donated by any person that has been cured from the infection of COVID-19, if they fulfill the standard conditions for donating blood and the following additional criteria:
Donor can be any person aged between 18 and 60, with a body weight above 60 kg. and who fulfills the above listed criteria.
*1 - https://www.fda.gov/emergency-preparedness-and-response/coronavirus-disease-2019-covid-19/donate-covid-19-plasma
*2 - https://ec.europa.eu/commission/presscorner/detail/en/ip_20_1435
*3 - Institute of transfusion medicine of RNM