ST. LOUIS — The Blues said John Kelly will participate in a study that will help determine whether antibodies from recovered COVID-19 patients can help those who are still battling the disease.
Kelly has been the Blues' play-by-play broadcaster since 2006, following in the steps of his legendary father, Dan, who was one of the most renowned play-by-play broadcasters in the country.
Kelly was diagnosed with double pneumonia in March and later tested positive for the coronavirus. Kelly has since recovered and will donate plasma for the study.
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"A friend of mine at Washington University reached out to me and said they were doing a study like they are at places all over the world, and they feel there's a really strong chance that people with antibodies for COVID-19 can help others who are still battling it," Kelly told the Blues. "You donate blood, they extract your plasma and inject that plasma into very sick patients. The studies show that a lot of people that are sick are getting better because they're using a recovered person's antibodies to fight off the virus.
"If I can make one person better, that's fantastic."
According to the Blues, Kelly will donate plasma for the study at the American Red Cross on May 2. He also stressed that people should follow social distancing guidelines provided by authorities and continue to take this virus seriously.
"I was feeling really, really bad when I went to an urgent care facility and had pneumonia in both lungs," Kelly said. "The doctor tested me for the coronavirus but he didn't feel I had it because I didn't have some of the classic symptoms. My test results didn't come back for 10 or 11 days, and when it did come back positive, I was probably back up to 90% feeling better. I think I'm glad I didn't know early on that I had the virus because I've read that those who develop pneumonia a lot of times have to go to the hospital and need a ventilator. Things can get really bad."
The FDA has said convalescent plasma that contains antibodies to SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, might be effective in fighting the virus.
It has been studied in outbreaks of other respiratory infections, including the 2009-2010 H1N1 influenza virus pandemic, 2003 SARS-CoV-1 epidemic, and the 2012 MERS-CoV epidemic.