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Hudsonville doctor to leave hospital after 3 month recovery from COVID

Posted at 11:37 PM, Dec 22, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-22 23:37:48-05

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — A Hudsonville doctor is going home this week after three months recovering from COVID-19.

Dr. Channing Finkbeiner is a family physician for Mercy Health. He was admitted to the hospital in early October. After weeks as a patient at Mercy Health, Dr. Finkbeiner continued his rehabilitation at Mary Free Bed in Grand Rapids.

“ I am still amazed that I am here for how sick I was, and the knowledge of most patients that are as sick as I was don’t make it,” said Dr. Finkbeiner, who had been intubated throughout a portion of his care. When he gained consciousness again, he could not walk, eat, or talk like he had before.

Much of his memory is also gone while he was in critical condition. Some of his memories remain foggy from the beginning stages of his progression to better health.

His wife, Laura, remembers the emotional roller coaster her family endured.

"I would update friends and family. Whenever there was no new news, that was a win because a steady day means he is not going backwards," said Laura. "So, that was just a joy when he would be the same. It was just hard to go up and down."

His care team consisted of occupational therapists, physical therapists, and speech therapists.

"All of a sudden, he just sort of turned a corner and was able to be able to tolerate therapy a lot better," said Brooke McNamara, speech pathologist at Mary Free Bed. "Once he was able to tolerate that therapy better, his progress just blossomed along with that. So I have been super impressed with the progress that he has made."

The therapy will continue in the upcoming months. Dr. Finkbeiner is also looking forward to going back to work sometime around early spring, dependent on his progress.