Neil Patrick Harris Reveals He and His Family Had Coronavirus Earlier This Year: 'I Thought I Had the Flu'

Neil Patrick Harris Reveals He and His Family Had Coronavirus Earlier This Year: 'I Thought I Had the Flu'

September 15, 2020

Neil Patrick Harris is opening up about his experience with the novel coronavirus.

The actor, 47, revealed during Tuesday's broadcast of the Today show that he and his family — including husband David Burtka and 9-year-old twins Gideon and Harper — contracted COVID-19 earlier this year.

Though Harris and his family have since recovered from the coronavirus, the father of two described the ordeal as "not pleasant" when recalling some of his symptoms.

"It happened very early [in the pandemic], like late March, early April," he shared. "We were doing our best before, and I thought I had the flu, and I didn't want to be paranoid about it. And then I lost my sense of taste and smell, which was a big indicator, so we holed up."

The loss of taste and smell appears to be an early sign of COVID-19 and was a common symptom among patients in South Korea, China and Italy, according to ENT UK, an organization of ear, nose and throat doctors in the United Kingdom.

Speaking about the recovery process, Harris continued, "It was not pleasant, but we got through it."

The How I Met Your Mother alum added that he and his family now "have antibodies and are feeling good."

"We want to make sure everyone's doing their best to slow this down every way possible, for sure," he said.

Though testing positive for COVID-19 antibodies indicates that a person has been exposed to the novel coronavirus, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has warned that the antibody tests currently available may not be accurate and should not be used to determine if someone is immune to COVID-19.

Harris and Burtka, 45, have been social distancing together with their children and two dogs amid the pandemic.

In May, Harris gave fans a glimpse of his life at home by sharing a video of his children playing a card game with their grandparents online, writing, "My parents (aka Mamaw and Papaw) can’t physically be with my kids these days. But we still try to get together. Virtual Go Fish went surprisingly well!"

A month later, Burtka spoke about how the family has been using this time to bond in a birthday tribute to Harris.

"I want to wish my incredible husband @nph a spectacular Birthday! Every celebration we spend together gets better and better," he wrote on Instagram. "I am grateful for this quarantine because we've actually gotten to spend more quality time and it's brought us closer together."

"Thank you @NPH for being a fantastic father, a perfect spouse and an overall magnificent man," Burtka added.

As of Tuesday, there have been more than 6,602,200 cases of COVID-19 and 195,100 deaths from coronavirus-related illnesses in the United States, according to a New York Times database.

As information about the coronavirus pandemic rapidly changes, PEOPLE is committed to providing the most recent data in our coverage. Some of the information in this story may have changed after publication. For the latest on COVID-19, readers are encouraged to use online resources from CDC, WHO, and local public health departments. PEOPLE has partnered with GoFundMe to raise money for the COVID-19 Relief Fund, a GoFundMe.org fundraiser to support everything from frontline responders to families in need, as well as organizations helping communities. For more information or to donate, click here.

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