One recovered coronavirus patient got his neighbors out of their homes and coworkers off the job after spending weeks in the hospital and time in a coma as he battled the disease.
Federal Pentagon Officer Patrick Bright received a hero's welcome home to his Clinton neighborhood Friday. After three weeks at Georgetown Medstar and nine days on a ventilator, Bright recovered from COVID-19.
"When I heard he was coming home we just wanted to celebrate with him," said one of Bright's neighbors Jennifer Parker.
Bright is the first coronavirus patient to be treated with blood plasma from a recovered COVID-19 patient in the Washington region, according to his physician Dr. Craig Kessler.
"It's a humbling experience when you know that the doctors tell your wife you only have two to five days and he might not make it," Bright said.
Kessler said there were a lot of tears in everybody's eyes when Bright left the hospital.
"He was a victory for us and the physicians who were at the front line."
Kessler said that because the impact of plasma on coronavirus patients is still being studied, it's too early to say for sure if that's what saved Bright. But Bright's recovery began after he received the plasma treatment.
Bright's plasma donor, Dr. Lambros Stamatakis, is optimistic it was the plasma that saved his life. He recovered from a mild case of COVID-19, which made his eligible to donate his blood plasma.
"We don't really know if my plasma made a difference or not, but darn-it, from a subjective prospective, I think it did," Stamatakis said. "It almost brings me to tears to think I was able to have an impact in somebody's life like this."
While Bright is the first COVID-19 patient to be treated with plasma in the district, there are now a number of hospitals that are doing the treatment as part of a clinical trial. There are a limited number of plasma donors and doctors are asking folks who have recovered to donate more plasma so they can do this for more patients.
If you are interested in making a plasma donation, you can email MGUHDonatePlasma@medstar.net to be screened.