COVID-19 patient who received plasma from former patient plans to pay it forward

Jimmie Hayden is first person in San Antonio to receive plasma containing COVID-19 antibodies

SAN ANTONIO – A 47-year-old San Antonio man who is the first COVID-19 patient to receive plasma containing COVID-19 antibodies from a former patient said he plans to pay it forward.

About a week ago, Jimmie Hayden was on a ventilator fighting for his life. But a couple of days after he received the transfusion, he started to improve significantly.

Jimmie Hayden believes the experimental treatment led to his remarkable recovery.

Local COVID-19 patient treated with plasma donated from recovered virus patient back home, family says

Hayden said, if possible, he will donate his own plasma.

“I mean, I know I’m definitely going to do it for sure. And I pray that there’s a way that I can help save someone’s life, like the gentleman that donated his plasma that I got. You know, I mean, they say that’s the gift of life. You know, I honestly, in my heart, I believe that’s what saved my life,” Hayden said.

Doctor explains experimental plasma treatment for COVID-19 patients

Hayden is now home and will be quarantined for about two weeks. He is weaning off oxygen, and because he was hospitalized for so long, he will need physical therapy and rehabilitation to regain his strength.

COVID-19, the respiratory disease caused by the new virus, stands for coronavirus disease 2019. The disease first appeared in late December 2019 in Wuhan, China, but spread around the world in early 2020, causing the World Health Organization to declare a pandemic in March. The first case confirmed in the U.S. was in mid-January and the first case confirmed in San Antonio was in mid-February.

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About the Authors:

David Ibañez has been managing editor of KSAT.com since the website's launch in October 2000.