The last two months have been full of trials and tribulations for all of us. New challenges most of us have never dreamed of seem to come fast and furious each and every day. One of those challenges for me, as many of you know, was contracting the virus last month. It was no surprise that I had contracted the virus considering the number of people I come in contact with daily as the DA. When all of this started, my Office’s focus was getting our people safely home while ensuring that the criminal justice system did not miss a beat. As early as March 16th, while more than 80% of my staff had been sent home to begin working remotely, members of my Executive Team and I were personally conducting the final in-person criminal arraignments and court proceedings in Suffolk County. This allowed us to get the hard working men and women of the Suffolk County District Attorney’s Office home and out of harm’s way while we laid the ground work to create a digital system for the Suffolk County criminal justice system. While we were successful in protecting our team members, later that week I tested positive for COVID-19.
While the challenge of simultaneously isolating from my family, fighting off the virus and managing my office through a global pandemic was trying, there has been an incredible silver lining in my experience. Since I have been fully recovered for several weeks, I recently visited Stony Brook Hospital to determine if I was eligible to donate my blood plasma to be used in the fight to find medical therapies against this deadly virus. Stony Brook researchers are collecting plasma from recovered COVID-19 patients to use as part of the treatment strategy for those currently battling the virus. I am actively participating in the program and I would encourage anyone who has tested positive for the virus and fully recovered to consider doing so as well.
The only way we will defeat this virus is if we fight it together. We must continue to have an “all for one, one for all” mentality and each one of us must do our part to protect our friends, loved ones, co-workers, and fellow humans. If you have fully recovered from COVID-19 and want to help others fighting the disease, please consider donating blood plasma today. Together, we will defeat this invisible enemy.