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Joint Replacement Patient Enjoys Exceptional Care

Kathy Davison, an account executive for Comcast Spotlight, has carried Beebe Healthcare’s message of “compassionate care” to the community for the past decade through television advertisements.  Yet, until recently, she had not thought about needing medical care herself. She had known for ages that she had a problem with her left knee, but was doing a great job of ignoring it. Years ago, she had had her right knee replaced at a medical center out of the area, and remembered the pain so well that she didn’t want to go through surgery again. Then, a fall in her driveway severely damaged her left knee and sent her straight to Beebe’s emergency department.

Kathy spoke with the emergency medical team, debated her options and decided reluctantly that she had to schedule a knee replacement. “I decided to have the surgery at Beebe because I was well aware of the national recognition that Beebe’s joint replacement program has been receiving for more than a decade. I had read all about the surgeons, the surgery teams, the nurses and others who care for joint replacement patients,” Kathy said. “And, over the years, I have met many people who work at Beebe so I felt comfortable to have my surgery there.”

Kathy’s experience lived up to her expectations. She was referred to Board certified orthopaedic surgeon Paul Harriott, MD. During her pre-appointment call, the scheduler explained to Kathy her record showed she worked full time. The scheduler asked if scheduling calls could be made to Kathy’s cell phone, instead of her home phone, so Kathy didn’t miss the call while at work. Kathy was astounded at everyone’s consideration to make her experience the easiest and best possible. She was able to schedule appointments and contact Beebe support staff for assistance without any trouble.

Kathy’s prior experiences with pre-surgery planning and anesthesia during surgery at another medical center had left her with a sense of anxiety. But in a pre-surgery meeting, the kindness and consideration she received from Beebe’s anesthesia team put her at ease.

“Anesthesiologist Dr. Stephani Allison and certified registered nurse anesthetist Maureen Syntax were aware of my anxieties and showed tenderness, compassion, and thoughtfulness, which helped me to relax and to not be afraid,” Kathy recalled.

Kathy was glad that Dr. Harriott was her surgeon. “No matter what, Dr. Harriott was there for me, before and after the surgery,” she said. “Knowing he would always be there to provide excellent care brought me a great sense of peace. You just don’t see this type of care at other hospitals.”

Kathy found that she had exceptional care from the orthopaedic team during her hospital stay. For example, the day following the surgery, orthopaedic nurse Jill Cavalcanti sat down beside her bed as they were getting her pain under control.  “Those extra moments helped me get through a difficult time,” Kathy recalled. “Jill took time out to just talk to me, comfort me and to be there when I needed someone. And, I know that she did that even though she was busy.”

Kathy also took note of the fact that the hospital staff showed empathy and sensitivity to her wife, as well.
“When my wife came to visit me, she was treated with the same respect and compassion I received as a patient. I was touched to see how the staff handled our situation.  They were sensitive and aware of the difficulties related to being at your spouse’s beside at the hospital.”

Kathy feared that physical therapy was going to be difficult for her, not only because she remembered previous experience, but also because she suffers with sciatica and the pain that can cause. Physical Therapist Jessica Glass helped Kathy overcome her fears and was able to motivate her to relax and keep moving.

Once Kathy was discharged from the hospital, she found that excellent care continued at home when Beebe Home Care physical therapists visited her. “After surgery, I had two weeks of physical therapy from Beebe Home Care Services. That team set the stage for my road to recovery mentally, physically and emotionally. Based on my experiences from previous surgeries, this recovery time and the physical and emotional experience exceeded my expectations.”

Kathy summed up her experience.
“Every department and every person at Beebe I touched showed exceptional consideration to me, my lifestyle, my choices, everything. I found it remarkable. Even the Beebe Home Care physical therapist came out on a Saturday to assess me so I could begin care on Monday. That knocked me out. Everyone made sure that I understood everything, every step of the way.”

As a community-owned, not-for-profit healthcare system, Beebe continues to depend on the generous support of individuals, corporations, businesses, and private foundations. All gifts, large or small, to Beebe Healthcare, are tax deductible and are channeled through Beebe Medical Foundation.  Please consider making a gift today and share your amazing stories with our community.

To learn more about how you can Celebrate Excellent Care, contact the Beebe Medical Foundation at (302) 644-2900 or write to foundation@beebehealthcareevents.org.