SASKATOON -- A Saskatchewan man who recovered from COVID-19 is participating in a national study to see whether his plasma is an effective treatment to the virus.

The clinical trial, called CONCOR-1, collects plasma from people who have recovered from the coronavirus and injects it into hospitalized COVID-19 patients.

According to Health Canada, scientists are interested in people whose immune systems have built antibodies to fight off COVID-19.

“It was a no brainer that I had to sign up for it ... just knowing how terrible [COVID-19] can be,” Andrew Elchuk told CTV News Saskatoon.

Elchuk, his wife and parents tested positive after returning home from a trip to Europe.

The family experienced chest pains, fevers, coughs and were fatigued.


The virus hit Elchuk’s dad the hardest. He had to spend more than three weeks alone at St. Paul’s Hospital and was put on a ventilator.

“He was quite weak coming out of that. I think he lost just under 30 pounds and looked quite gaunt,” Elchuk said, adding that he and his family have fully recovered.

Elchuk said he hopes his plasma donation can avoid situations like the one his dad went through.

“At the end of the day, if there’s a small chance that it means someone like my dad doesn’t have to be intubated for that long and especially by themselves, if it can even cut down that time even a bit — it will be worth it,” Elchuk said.

More than 40 hospitals across Canada are taking part in the study.