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K-State professor shares his journey after testing positive for COVID-19

Coronavirus in Kansas

MANHATTAN, Kan. (KSNW) – Kansas State University journalism professor Andrew Smith, who tested positive for the coronavirus, is home after spending multiple days in the hospital.

Smith says he is feeling grateful to be out of ICU. However, he says this is just the beginning of a long battle with COVID-19.

“A lot of folks think, ‘Oh, he is out of the hospital. Everything is fine now,’ that’s kind of not the way that COVID works,” said Smith.

Smith contracted the virus during an educational trip to London with his seven of his journalism students. The symptoms became noticeable shortly after their return home.

“I was taking the bags out of the car, and suddenly, I felt really short of breath. Oh boy, that could be a problem. I went to bed, woke up the next day with a high fever, cough. I mean everything just kind of jumped on me,” he said.

Smith tested positive for the coronavirus. On top of that, he is battling double pneumonia.

Aside from the symptoms, Smith says isolation is one of the biggest challenges.

“(My doctor) would only come in once a day. My nurse would come in about every three to five hours, try to what they called cluster care. So, that people didn’t have to be around me and that’s a hard thing when people are afraid to be around you,” said Smith.

He is thankful though for the outpour of support he received online.

“So uplifting, I could really just feel everyone’s concerns and prayers.”

Smith is back home in self-quarantine while his family also faces the same virus.

“We haven’t been doing things like playing games or anything we’re like no we’re fighting a really bad illness instead,” he said.

He says his doctors are talking about his recovery in terms of weeks and months.

“By the middle of summer if things can be better, great! That’s really what we’re hoping for right now. So it’s a long, long haul.”

Smith decided to share his story to bring awareness to the coronavirus.

“We wanna make sure people aren’t scared but they are concerned and they understand it’s real.”

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