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Neenah man who recovered from COVID-19 aims to give back

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Posted at 8:31 PM, Oct 15, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-16 08:40:27-04

APPLETON (WGBA) -- Paul Steger is completing another round of plasma donation. His plasma contains COVID-19 antibodies, and he wants to use them to help others fighting the disease.

"It is nice to know I am going to help people recover from it faster," he said.

He and his son contracted coronavirus in April. He says it was similar to the flu, but also very different.

"I had a fever, chills, aches you name it," he said. "But I also lost my sense of smell and the fatigue was intense."

Both recovered from it and decided to help those who really need it. They started donating their plasma over the summer at the Community Blood Center in Appleton. He says he was able to share enough antibodies that go to local hospitals.

According to the blood center, there is a need for convalescent plasma donors right now. Cases of Coronavirus are skyrocketing in Wisconsin, and hospitalizations are at record highs.

"The science is new, but there is enough evidence to show that it works," said Kristine Belanger, the Chief Operating Officer for the blood center. "The plasma we receive is actually leaving our labs quickly."

Plasma with antibodies is given to a patient suffering severe symptoms of COVID-19. The antibodies can help a person recover from the virus. With so many people ill with the disease right now, Belanger is encouraging people to do the same as Steger.

"It can go a long way," she said. "Especially now. It is the worse it has ever been."

If you are interested in donating plasma or blood, you can call (800) 280-4102 or visit https://www.communityblood.org/