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EPCC trustee who lost both parents, was hospitalized for Covid-19, calls for plasma donors

Bonnie Soria Najera
Bonnie Soria Najera arrives at home after being released from the hospital.
Bonnie Soria Najera
El Paso Community College trustee Bonnie Soria Najera.

EL PASO, Texas -- The Covid-19 virus has affected thousands of El Pasoans.

ABC-7 has been closely following the emotional journey of El Paso Community College trustee Bonnie Najera, who lost both parents to Covid-19 and was also diagnosed with the virus herself.

But now, she wants to help others.

“My mom just passed away about an hour ago and they are about to put my dad on a ventilator,” Najera told ABC-7 in late May.

In June, on the day of her mother's funeral, her father also died of Covid-19.

A few weeks later she found out she was infected and had to be hospitalized.

“I'm going to try my best to beat this because of my kids and grandkids,” Najera told ABC-7 in July. 

Now fast forward two months later.

“Knowing I was going to be around a lot of people made me nervous,” Najera said.

Najera now visits the Vitalant blood donation center donating plasma.

She said she’s come here because when her mother was fighting for her life at the hospital.

“They couldn't find her type of blood because not enough people were donating,” Najera said.

“Covid doesn’t really have a magic treatment, so we are trying everything that is available,” said Dr. Debabrata Mukherje, that internal medicine chair at Texas Tech Health and Sciences Center at El Paso.

Mukherje tells ABC-7 that giving a Covid-19 patient plasma from someone previously infected may help them, and there are little to no side effects.

“It’s just like donating blood,” Mukherje said.

“It’s really easy, simple, nothing too complicated,” Najera added.

For Najera, the hour spent is worth every minute if she can help even one person.

“It’s important for people to do it, it’s rewarding and I wouldn’t be scared about it... so far so good,” Najera said.

Vitalant administrators say they have three donation centers across the city, and for more information you can click here.

Article Topic Follows: Health

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Jerry Najera

Jerry Najera is an ABC-7 reporter/photographer.


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