GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — With an army of medical professionals by his side, Chad Kauffman left Mercy Health St. Mary’s Hospital Wednesday victoriously, knowing they helped him defeat his enemy, COVID-19.
Doctors said Kauffman is the hospital’s first COVID-19 critical care patient to be discharged.
“They saved my life,” Kauffman said. “It’s a combination of good doctors and a good God that doesn’t want me to go for some reason.”
That reason remains to be seen, but what is clear, the 40-year-old man, contracted the virus on the job as an Uber driver.
“It all started with a head cold for 14 days and then on the 14th day, I put myself in the hospital because I started having a little bit more chest pains and shortness of breath,” Kauffman said.
Kauffman’s symptoms worsened and doctors put him on a ventilator. His family couldn’t visit him, but he knows they were there in spirit.
“There was no way I could’ve done it without my wife, my mom or my sisters or anybody in my family,” Kauffman said.
Kauffman’s wife, Johana, was ecstatic when he finally came home after being admitted for three weeks.
“It was like a miracle to see him again,” Johana said. “I was so happy and I wanted to hug him, but I couldn’t.”
Though no one in the hospital could give Kauffman a hug, they set him away in style as he wrapped his mind around a new life beyond the emergency room doors.
“I know that he (God) is not done with me, and I know that there are other plans in my life that he has for me,” Kauffman said.
Kauffman told News 8 he is on the mend but will receive at-home physical and occupational therapy as he continues recovering.