26 Vietnamese people volunteer to donate lungs to British pilot

As many as 26 Vietnamese people have volunteered to donate part of their lungs to save a critically ill British pilot, Vietnam’s 91st COVID-19 patient, the National Co-ordination Centre for Human Organ Transplantation has said.

The British pilot, who is Vietnam’s 91st COVID-19 patient, has been treated at the HCM City’s Hospital for Tropical Diseases. — Photo tuoitrenews.vn

Nguyen Hoang Phuc, deputy director of the centre told the online newspaper zingnews.vn that about 20 people called the centre to register for lung donation and six people contacted the centre via the Facebook fanpage.

All were Vietnamese nationals and had no relationship with the patient in person.

Phuc said the kind gestures were highly appreciated and it would be a source of encouragement for the health sector in trying to cure the patient.

However, doctors said the patient should receive organs from a brain-dead registered donor. Current regulations didn’t allow transplant lungs to be donated by most living people. The donated lungs must come from a brain-dead donor.

On Wednesday, a woman and a veteran aged over 40 and 70, respectively, registered to donate their lungs to the patient.

A potential brain-dead donor met the criteria, however, his lungs were found to have an infection and were no longer working.

The British patient, 43, was infected with SAR-CoV-2 in Vietnam on March 19 after visiting the Buddha Bar which subsequently emerged as a COVID-19 cluster in HCM City.

 

Vietnam’s 91st COVID-19 patient has been treated at the HCM City’s Hospital for Tropical Diseases. As of Thursday morning, the test’s results showed severe solidification and fibrosis of the lungs, making it difficult for oxygen to get into the patient’s blood. 

The patient has since tested negative for the virus. He is completely dependent on Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation (ECMO) and needs blood infiltration.

Dr Nguyen Van Vinh Chau, director of the hospital said the hospital was re-conducting all tests to assess the function of the lungs, heart and organs in the patient’s body and tests on superinfection bacteria.

Doctors would then conduct professional consultations to review the condition of the patient, he said.

According to the hospital, the treatment cost for the patient has reached more than VNĐ3 billion ($128,550). The lung transplant was estimated to cost between VNĐ1-1.5 billion ($42,850-64,270). — VNS

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