By Charles "Chuck" Isner
On Wednesday, 3/21/18, I suffered a heart attack while teaching class at Lee Freshman High School. I was transported to Midland Memorial Hospital where I was diagnosed and offered a choice of treatment from their attending cardiologist, or transfer to ORMC to be seen by my personal cardiologist, Dr. Shanti Neerukonda, who has been treating me for heart issues since 2008. I chose the latter.
After arriving, I was scheduled for triple-bypass surgery the following day by Dr. Kirit Patel. I am writing this letter to commend everyone who assisted in my care, from the nurse and office manager at Lee Freshman, to the EMTs who transported me to MMH. The staff at MMH and the EMTs who carried me to ORMC were also excellent and their positive communication was another blessing along the way. Finally, the staff at ORMC was nothing less than first rate in the way they cared for me from my arrival, to the OR, to CICU, to recovery. I spent almost a week under their care and the compassion and concern made a very difficult time so much easier.
I came to Odessa originally in 1974 and have spent most of my ensuing life in this community. Over the years I have listened to people complain and denigrate the medical care and community here, but I want to let that community know that such criticism has never been my experience. Not just the doctors, but the nurses, aides, physical therapists, breathing therapists, and others were kind, cheerful, and supportive every single step of the way. I promised many of them that when I was released I would write this letter. It is the least I can do for the tremendous care I received on the path to recovery.
I hope others will be as kind when they receive such care in the future. They deserve more than a “Thanks” on the way out the door. These people work to save lives every single day, often for far less than the value they add to people’s lives and to the community.
With a grateful heart, I remain,
Charles “Chuck” Isner