Our hospital is located in Spartanburg, South Carolina. We are a member of a larger network of rehabilitation and long-term acute care hospitals through Ernest Health, but are managed locally to best meet the needs of our own community. By being a member of Ernest Health, we are able to share information, knowledge, and resources with all our hospitals so we can continually evaluate and improve the delivery of care to our patients.
These efforts have earned us national recognition as a healthcare leader five years in a row (2014-2018), allowing us to provide the highest level of available care to our patients in our own community.
They did just that. From the PTs to the OTs, they got me up early each day and ran me through a series of exercises, drills, and routines designed to get me on track. They even traveled to my house with me to evaluate my living space and then trained me to function in my particular environment. This was a huge benefit for my wife, as she was concerned with how would she help me at home. I can’t tell you how valuable that was!
After two weeks I discharged and went home. About a month later I was fitted with my new prosthetic leg and had to learn how to walk on it. My only choice for outpatient therapy was SRI. I knew they would train me well, and I had complete confidence in the techs there. They did just that. I was there twice a week for about 10 weeks, and they taught me how to walk again! I’m getting stronger every day and will use the techniques they taught me for the rest of my life.
A very personal note is needed here. This amputation was totally unexpected, and it’s easy to fall into a dark hole over it. I’ve had my moments, believe me. But you can’t stay there, you have to climb out and get on with your life.
It’s a choice, but made much easier by the staff at SRI, especially Kayla, Monique, and Lidia, who literally would not let me slip too far, challenged me each session, and kept me on the path to healing and walking again.
All the staff at SRI are professional. But more important than that, they were dynamic, compassionate, and committed to teaching an old dog (aged 69) the new tricks he would need to start the new adventures ahead. I believe I ended up there because I was supposed to be there.”
Brian McDonald, 55, was used to being a busy man. He worked full-time at Michelin as a mold assembly operator and owned a consignment shop. During his spare time, Brian enjoyed golf and seeking unique items for his store. But one November day, Brian’s world turned upside-down.
Visiting his mother, Brian noticed the right side of his body felt numb. “It was like it went to sleep,” he described of the sensation. Brian’s daughter, who works in the healthcare industry, recommended a visit to an urgent care facility. “From there, I was sent to Charlotte, NC, where I was diagnosed with an intraparenchymal hematoma.” This is when blood pools in the brain. Brian’s condition required a craniotomy.
“After surgery, I realized there were things I couldn’t do,” Brian recalled. “I never thought at 55 I would be in a situation where I couldn’t feed myself, bathe or go to the bathroom alone.”
For someone who lived such an active life, the sudden lack of independence proved challenging. But Brian wouldn’t allow this to be his new normal.
“After 30 days in the hospital, I was stable and ready for the next step,” Brian noted. The hospital recommended acute rehabilitation. “I knew about Spartanburg Rehabilitation Institute from a family member,” said Brian. “The hospital was highly rated from friends and family, so it was an easy decision.”
Brian considers this to be a critical point in his road to recovery.
“Never did I expect what a good decision it was! Everyone from the front desk staff, dietary, nursing, therapy, and the guys that clean the floors were wonderful. There are people I remember from all areas of the hospital. They worked hard for me every day and I didn’t want to let them down.”
Brian certainly didn’t let anyone down. His hard work allowed him to discharge from inpatient rehab and return home.
But his work wasn’t done. Brian still had goals he wanted to achieve. “After I was released from the inpatient side they continued therapy on an outpatient basis,” Brian said. “I continued to get better and went back to work part-time 5 months later. Not only was I working, but doing normal activities again like cutting the grass and driving.”
“This experience reaffirmed my faith in God and people,” he continued. “Everyone at SRI contributed to my success and I am proud to share my experience.”
With Brian’s stroke in the rear-view mirror, he looks forward to living a healthier life. “In the future, I want to be more educated on my health and be proactive to stay healthy,” he said. “This was a wake-up call and I have reprioritized things in my life.”
– Brian McDonald