Brown Deer man with COVID-19 thanks doctors, nurses who treated him: 'They are doing God's work'

BROWN DEER -- A Brown Deer man was released from the hospital Sunday, April 5 after he was admitted on March 26 for treatment for the coronavirus. Mack Bates tested positive for COVID-19 days after 43rd birthday.

"I'm a person who has strong faith, but I was scared, I have to admit," said Bates.

Bates spent 11 days in the hospital. He had a fever for days, and spent more than a week hooked up to oxygen.

"It was like someone was pushing on my chest, and I'm a big guy, so if I feel like someone is pushing on my chest, that's a pretty big deal," said Bates.

Mack Bates

He was admitted to Ascension Columbia St. Mary's Hospital after he became too weak for dialysis treatment.

"I actually had to get into a wheelchair because I couldn't physically go inside by myself on my own two feet, which I've always done," said Bates.

Health care workers took care of Bates and other COVID-19 patients on an isolated floor.

Mack Bates

"They literally are doing God's work," said Bates. "There are so many people who are so scared, who don't know what's going to happen, who may or may not make it."

Bates, in isolation at home Monday, said he's grateful for the treatment he received, and the simple fact that he survived.

"Stay home, take care of yourself, take care of your loved ones, and just know, as they say, this too shall pass," said Bates.

Bates does have a pre-existing condition, but said everyone should be taking COVID-19 seriously.