The COVID-19 pandemic and the havoc that it is causing in India is heart-breaking. There is a mad scramble for ICU and ventilator beds and there have been visuals of people standing for long hours to get those basic amenities. India has approximately 1.9 million hospital beds, 95,000 ICU beds, and 48,000 ventilators according to sources. Now in view of experts’ warnings about future waves of the disease, it may be prudent to pay attention to some research projections that estimate a potential requirement of nearly 2,70,000 ICU beds, which is well over 2.8 times the estimated number of total available ICU beds in India. A major percentage of these may further require ventilators. This puts an insurmountable amount of pressure on the limited resources since the influx of patients into the hospitals is manifold. The situation across India in April 2021 was testimony for the same. But what if doctors can prioritize patients?

Prioritizing the use of resources

Recently, a medical technology company announced a technology that can help identify COVID-19 patients at increased relative risk of intubation with mechanical ventilation (IMV) and mortality, in conjunction with clinical findings and the results of other laboratory testing. Becton, Dickinson and company has launched an immune test approved by CDSO, India, for Covid-19 application to help doctors prioritize ICU beds and ventilators.

As India continues to battle with this unprecedented healthcare crisis in the wake of the second wave of COVID-19, application of this immune assessment-based IVD assay amongst COVID-19 patients could potentially ease out the already choked healthcare infrastructure in the country by prioritizing hospital admission and ICU beds to those who are at higher relative risk for requiring ventilator support, and increased risk of mortality. By providing deeper understanding of immune responses, clinicians can better understand an appropriate course of action for patients while also prioritizing the use of precious hospital resources.

An assay kit to understand immune efficiency

Speaking on the importance of gauging the patient’s immunity profile, Pavan Mocherla, Managing Director, BD India/South Asia, says, “As India continues to battle with this unprecedented healthcare crisis in the wake of the second wave of COVID-19, application of this immune assessment-based IVD assay amongst COVID-19 patients could potentially ease out the already choked healthcare infrastructure in the country by prioritizing hospital admission and ICU beds to those who are at higher relative risk for requiring ventilator support, and increased risk of mortality”.

Approved by Drug Controller (General) India

The kit, which is approved for use in European Union, has been reviewed and approved by Drug Controller (General) India CDSCO, India, to monitor the lymphocyte subsets for various applications. The test is conducted on a clinical flow cytometer which are available with major hospitals and network laboratories across India. In the current scenario of COVID-19 crisis, this information can now equip the clinician with a deeper understanding of the patient’s immune status.

Assessing a patient’s risk

As an industry leader in immunology research and clinical care, BD tools were utilized for research early in the pandemic and early publications showed that the BD Multitest 6-Color TBNK Reagent with Trucount Tubes was useful in assessing immune status for COVID-19 patients. Further clinical studies have demonstrated clinically validated cut-off levels and further refined the role this kit has along with other testing in determining the COVID-19 patients’ risk of IMV and mortality at hospitalization.

As shown in peer-reviewed clinical studies, some patients with COVID-19 may exhibit a decrease of specific lymphocyte T-cell subsets and this decrease is associated with increased risk of IMV and mortality. Knowing a patient’s accurate T-cell count, therefore, can be instrumental in informing the right course of action, and this kit may aid in these types of determinations.

 

This post first appeared on The Health Site

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