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Kaiser Permanente Members Share Stories of Gratitude
By: PR Newswire
Dec. 6, 2012 05:14 PM
OAKLAND, Calif., Dec. 6, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- For many people, December is a time of reflection and counting one's blessings. This month, Kaiser Permanente's Care Stories blog (kp.org/carestories) highlights stories of gratitude. Three Kaiser Permanente members reflect on how their care teams came through for them at the right time, providing support to help them overcome difficult, sometimes scary, moments in their lives.
December's stories include:
Veronica Aguilar, 38, was perfectly healthy when she suddenly suffered a stroke one morning. Her husband, Valentin, ran to her side after she fell to the ground and noticed that the left side of her face had dropped. Fortunately, Valentin recognized the signs of a stroke, so he immediately called 911. The paramedics arrived in 10 minutes, and upon Veronica's arrival at Kaiser Permanente Fontana (Calif.) Medical Center, her care team worked quickly to administer an intravenous clotbuster. Within two hours, Veronica had already regained her ability to speak. One week later, Veronica left the hospital with absolutely no physical signs of ever having suffered a stroke. She believes both Valentin's quick thinking and her care team's quick action saved her from suffering further damage. "I want to say thank you to Kaiser [Permanente] Fontana for being there at the right time for me."
To say Valerie Silva juggled a busy schedule would be an understatement. Between volleyball practice, school, work, and homework, the high school senior was running on empty and relied heavily on caffeinated drinks to get her through her long days. Valerie soon began experiencing debilitating headaches. They disrupted her sleep, forced her to miss volleyball practice, and eventually affected her schoolwork. "We felt helpless," said Valerie's mom, Desiree. She brought Valerie in to see pediatrician Michael Nelson, MD at Kaiser Permanente Otay Mesa Outpatient Medical Center. He and his team discovered that simply cutting Valerie off from caffeine and adjusting her diet cured her of her headaches. These days, Valerie is taking it easier and her grades have shot back up. Desiree is grateful for the work the doctors did to help bring Valerie back. She was particularly touched by Dr. Nelson's genuine concern and personal attention. "They took good care of my little girl," she said tearfully.
Lonny Catalan came to terms with a difficult truth in 2009: she had breast cancer. The news devastated her, but Lonny and family pulled together to provide her with the support she needed to overcome her disease. Lonny also felt that family support from her doctors at Kaiser Permanente. "Even though they really didn't know anything about me, they made me feel like I belonged. They made me feel like everything was going to be okay," she recalled. "I honestly knew I was in good hands." Lonny credits her care team and Kaiser Permanente's connected system for saving her life. "Each little piece that [my doctors] did – they all saved my life. It was like a system put in place to assist you when you needed it the most." Despite her challenging circumstances, Lonny says, "I was able to go through this experience with ease."
Launched in July 2011, Care Stories is a collection of first-person video narratives from Kaiser Permanente members talking about their own care in their own words, unscripted and uncompensated.
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