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‘I want to pay it forward’: El Paso virus survivor eager to donate plasma, urges others to give

henry delgado
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Covid-19 survivor Henry Delgado.

EL PASO, Texas -- An El Paso Covid-19 survivor pleads for others like him to do their part to save lives.

Henry Delgado reached out to ABC-7 after seeing the report Aug. 7 about successful treatments against Covid, specifically convalescent plasma. Delgado told ABC-7 he spent 11 days in the Covid ICU at University Medical Center after being diagnosed July 13 and going into the hospital five days later.

"It got to the point where I didn't think I was going to make it," Delgado said during a video interview with ABC-7. "They had me on 40 liters of 100 percent oxygen just so I could make a simple oxygen transfer in my lungs. I was told I was very, very close to being put on a ventilator. That's when I think my family was told to prepare for the worst."

Delgado, who is 62 and has diabetes and hypertension, said doctors at UMC began his treatment with steroids, Remdesivir and convalescent plasma. The plasma can only come from the blood donated by people who have recovered from the coronavirus.

"I had a doctor who sat down and prayed with me the day that I got discharged," Delgado said. "As soon as they started doing the Remdesivir and the plasma, when I bottomed out at my worst and I almost needed to be put on a ventilator, I slowly started to get better."

He was discharged on July 29 and is eager to continue recovering so he can donate plasma himself.

"I want to pay it forward and do what somebody else did for me and hopefully save somebody else's life," Delgado said. "If you have the antibodies, I would say do it. Donate it. I'm confident, I know that that's what saved my life: the plasma, the Remdesivir, the steroid treatment. All that put together, I know that helped me get better and if you could help somebody else, do it."

Doctors at UMC told ABC-7 they are in desperate need of plasma donations.

If you are one of the more than 12,000 who have recovered in El Paso County, you can get an antibody test and donate plasma through Vitalant blood centers.

El Paso / News / Video

Stephanie Valle

Stephanie Valle co-anchors ABC-7 at 5, 6 and 10 weeknights.

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