Hospital staff probably saved wife’s life

Frank Warren, Greenwood

Editor, Commonwealth:

There have been many neg­ative comments in this news­paper regarding Greenwood Leflore Hospital and MedStat ambulance service. I would like to offer a different perspective.

Beginning in the early morning of Jan. 2 until March 14, I have called 911 five or six times for help in getting my wife, Alice, up after falling. Thankfully, no fall caused injury. Every call was courte­ously answered with prompt response by highly trained emergency medical techni­cians who carefully surveyed the situation and took proper steps to get her on her feet and assist her to a chair or to bed.

At 3:30 a.m. on March 14, she was awakened by being sick to her stomach. While I immediately turned on the light and grabbed a waste can, she instinctively clasped her hand over her mouth. After I got her settled down, we went back to sleep. Although I noticed she seemed somewhat short of breath, it didn’t click that something was wrong. After a few hours, she became sick again and complained of feeling weak.

I called Dr. Henry Flautt’s office and the staff member told me to call 911. Again MedStat responded very timely, assessed the situation and transported her to Greenwood Leflore Hospital.

Immediately upon arrival, the attending nurse, Alicia, recognized Alice’s shortness of breath. She was quickly moved to a room where she could receive oxygen, be moni­tored and begin tests to deter­mine the cause of her distress. Alicia made a statement hop­ing she had not aspirated the “stuff” from her throwing up, which made me remember her clasping her mouth. Chest X-rays soon confirmed she had aspirational pneumonia.

As soon as a room was available, she was transferred to the intensive care unit for treatment. After her breathing became increasingly labored, she was placed on a ventilator, where she remained for the better part of 11 days. Upon removal of the ventilator, her oxygen saturation and other vital signs remained strong, to much rejoicing. She remained in a step-down room for one day, then moved to 5 West, where she continued to receive excellent care until Friday, April 5, when she was moved to Crystal Health and Rehab for rehab.

Without the grace of God, prayers of family and friends, the excellent care by Dr. Jeff Moses and the emergency room staff, and by Drs. Rachael Faught and Joe Pressler, Jr., and by the won­derful staff of nurses, I believe my wife would have died. Thanks to all for your prayer­ful support.