We’re in good hands

Published 12:56 am Thursday, March 3, 2011

It was a recent warm Friday afternoon when I found myself on Washington’s Main Street making the most of my day off, hoping that my swollen and painful knee would soon be better. The quiet of the day was disrupted by a call from my orthopedic surgeon, Dr. Jeff Barwick. In the midst of the beauty of a mid-February afternoon, I received the unpleasant news that my swollen knee was a sign of something more serious and I would need advanced care and surgery.

The following Monday morning, I was in a hospital receiving expert physician and nursing care, undergoing complex nuclear medicine scans, having laboratory tests and seeing other specialists to begin the treatment for my condition.

Where was I? What medical facility held my physical well-being in its collective hands? UNC Hospital? Duke? Wake Forest? PCMH?

Even though all of these are fine institutions where I have previously been a patient, my road to recovery started behind the doors at Beaufort County Medical Center in my hometown of Washington. The care I received č from admission to discharge č was second to none! During my stay, I was impacted by almost every department in our hospital, and I can tell you that the care was top notch.

As most of you are aware, I have been very involved as a community member in ensuring that our local health system remains viable and strong for years to come. I have attended rallies with many of you, spoken at public hearings and signed petitions. I, like you, want the very best for our health care, indeed the best for our community.

In a million years, I never would have imagined that I would need to be in the hospital. I had been well, happy and active enjoying life in our little part of the world. But as we all know, life is what happens while you are making other plans. In an instant, those things we hold most sacred, like our health, can be challenged. For me, it was an orthopedic issue. For you, it might be something else.

Regardless of our health issues, we do have a top-notch medical center and staff at Beaufort County Medical Center. The doctors, nurses, technologists and entire staff work continuously to bring the best and most current medical and surgical care to the residents of our region.

Much has been said good and bad about our hospital, and I am excited and pleased with the progress that is being made with talks with University Health Systems of Eastern Carolina to make the health care-delivery system in Beaufort and surrounding counties strong for years to come. I am hopeful, as I know many of you are, that a positive resolution to this issue will come very soon.

I am improving now at home and still benefiting from the care of the therapists and providers of our health system. But most of all, this activist, who quickly and unexpectedly found himself in need of expert care, is so thankful that it was found at Beaufort Regional Health System.

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