‘I was looking for anything that might be able to help’: Kate Garraway wanted to donate her blood plasma to husband Derek Draper after she recovered from COVID-19
Kate Garraway has revealed she offered to donate her blood plasma to husband Derek Draper after they were both struck down with coronavirus.
The Good Morning Britain recovered from COVID-19 but her husband has been in intensive care since March.
Speaking on Monday’s GMB, Kate explained she was keen to donate her blood plasma to Derek after her recovery – a procedure encouraged by the NHS and the government.
Help: Kate Garraway has revealed she offered to donate her blood plasma to husband Derek Draper after they were both struck down with coronavirus
While Derek is now free of coronavirus and came out of a coma last month, Kate told her GMB co-star Ben Shepherd that she was wanted to help in any way she can when Derek’s condition was at its most critical.
‘Something I saw which intrigued me was this call out from the government for people to come forward to donate blood, so they can make use of blood plasma. Those who have had Covid and recovered,’ she said.
‘When Derek was very seriously affected by the virus – as in the virus was active, not as he is now – towards the end of April, I was looking for anything that might be able to help.’
Kate said she spoke to her husband’s doctors, explaining: ‘I said to the doctors, “Could I donate my blood? I’ve had it, I seem to have recovered. Would antibodies that I have be helpful to him?”‘
Support: The Good Morning Britain recovered from COVID-19 but her husband has been in intensive care since March (pcitured together in December 2019)
‘They said, “We are months away from being able to be confident that we could, in a sense, clean your blood enough to make sure that only the good antibodies were going in.”‘
Kate added that Derek has since had plasma exchanged, explaining: ‘We know plasma has been really helpful now. And more recently, Derek has had plasma exchanged, to try to support the cleaning up of the system.’
Kate asked GMB’s doctor Dr Amir Khan if the UK is in a position where people could donate blood to family members who have coronavirus, admitting ‘for anybody who has a relative who is sick, it just feels like something you could do to help’.
He said: ‘Definitely. We all want to help people who are suffering from this virus. And convalescent plasma therapy, we are really encouraging people to come forward and donate plasma. Because we need more and more of it. Particularly if there is a risk of a second wave.’
‘I really like this idea. It’s one of these old-fashioned kinds of medical therapies that has come back. It was first used in the 1800s to treat children with diphtheria, and then again in the 1900s to treat Spanish flu.’
‘The NHS and the government are really encouraging people who have tested positive for coronavirus, who have thought they’d had it in the past and perhaps have not had a test yet, to come forward and donate their plasma.’
‘Their antibodies can be used in patients who are particularly unwell in hospital to help treat their infection.’
Kate then asked: ‘That’s great now, but why wasn’t it used before?’ He admitted the evidence has ‘always been there’ but the technology and the donations ‘haven’t always been there’, and he believes it ‘should’ve been used earlier’.