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Patient Stories

Stories from Grateful Patients

Listen to your neighbours: incredible work is being done in Dunnville. Read some incredible stories from people who’s lives have been positively impacted by the Haldimand War Memorial Hospital and Edgewater Gardens Long-Term Care Centre.

I walked into the Emerg and said
“I think I’m having a heart attack”

Lisa Hribar’s life was saved by fast action at HWMH

In 2018, I had a heart attack. It couldn’t have come at a worse time.

It was nearing the end of Smile Cookie week, and I was working night and day at Tim Hortons. I was committed to putting as many smiles on people’s faces as I could because the proceeds from the cookies would benefit our local Haldimand War Memorial Hospital and that was my goal. We did it: we sold more than 22,700 cookies… far more than any other Tims in the country!

But the stress of the campaign to be number one in Canada was more than I expected. On Saturday, the stress hit me like a truck. I felt heart palpitations and dizzy. But I worked through it.

Things only got worse. I couldn’t pinpoint what was happening. I thought I had indigestion and nothing I did was helping! I couldn’t stand or sit I needed to take a break.

That evening after being home for a while it wasn’t getting better. I chewed two aspirins and that didn’t make a difference. Now I really knew I needed help. Instead of calling 9-1-1, I drove the 20 minutes to the emergency room in the middle of the night. Yes, I should have called for help, but I wasn’t thinking straight, and the hospital was so, soooooo close.

I can’t stress enough how important having a hospital like the Haldimand War Memorial Hospital is. Having a hospital nearby saved my life. It could save yours, too.

What happened next happens in so many small community hospitals like ours – the doctor and nurses immediately flew into action. They were committed to finding out what was wrong with me, and fast. There wasn’t a moment to spare! An EKG test revealed that I was having a heart attack! The doctor and nurses stabilized me and then an ambulance rushed me to Hamilton General for more advanced care. I know the quick actions of the HWMH care team saved my life.

An image of Lisa, who's life was saved by quick-thinking at HWMH

I can’t stress enough how important having a hospital like the Haldimand War Memorial Hospital is.

Having a hospital nearby saved my life. It could save yours, too.

I only had a ten percent chance of survival. It is truly a miracle that I am still alive.

David Dawson shares his story of surviving a massive stroke.

I could hear myself slurring my words as I talked to Mom on the phone. Something wasn’t right. As I hung up and sat down on the couch, everything familiar was gone. There was a burst of colour, and then, nothing.

When I woke up, desperately gasping for air, my immediate thought was to phone my wife, Brenda. It took several attempts. I had lost most of the use of my arms and hands and my vision was blurred. She called the ambulance, and I was rushed to Haldimand War Memorial Hospital. I had had a stroke.

What happened next is the reason I can write this letter to you today.

I believe without a doubt that emergency room physician Dr. Jeffrey Remington was instrumental in saving my life that day. He took one look at me when I arrived at HWMH and acted quickly. Satisfied that I had been stabilized, he transferred me to the regional stroke centre in Hamilton where they were briefed and waiting for me.

A photo of David smiling in front of his home.

It has been over two years since I had my massive stroke. I was recovering at home when the magnitude of what happened hit me.

I understand now that there could have been an entirely different outcome if we didn’t have our amazing hospital right here.

Inspired to give? Your gifts matter!

If you have a Grateful Patient story, please Contact Us so that we can hear it. Or, make a Grateful Patient gift from yourself or on behalf of a loved one. It’s because of you that we’re able to offer such great health care close to home.

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