Thursday, November 6, 2014
Summit Health Grateful Patient Joe Diviney

Near and Far

One patient’s journey home

They’ve been world travelers. But a fateful night in Chambersburg, PA changed the course of their lives.

Joe and Laura Diviney stopped for an overnight stay on their way home to Charlotte, North Carolina after visiting their daughters in New York City. Joe prepared to freshen up for the night, stepping into a handicapped accessible shower that allowed him to accommodate his Multiple Dystrophy.

In seconds, Joe was on the shower floor. He knew it was bad.

Laura dialed 911 and the EMT’s were there in minutes. They carefully transported him to the Emergency Department at Chambersburg Hospital where Dr. Jim Freeman and his team leapt into action.

His thigh bone had a high break…not quite a broken hip. Dr. Jim Shaffer was on call for the Orthopaedic team. The doctors kept Joe and Laura informed every step of the way as to what they had found and how best to treat Joe.

Preparing for surgery, Joe requested a saddle block to numb him from the waist down instead of undergoing general anesthesia, and was grateful Dr. Shaffer respected his wish. Joe and Laura were impressed with all of his caregivers’ accuracy and attention to detail as they prepped him for surgery. The staff’s professionalism greatly relieved the couple’s shock and stress of their unexpected situation.

Returning to their home in North Carolina was impossible until Joe could tolerate the transfer to the couple’s van. For nearly four weeks a large team of physicians, nurses, CNA’s, social workers, and physical therapists worked in concert toward Joe’s recovery goals. In Joe’s own words, “the journey from surgery though rehab was absolutely seamless.”

He says his caregivers coupled their extraordinary skill sets with a big dose of compassion and generosity. He singled out one male nurse who “did his work with such joy and grace, with a sense of nobility.”

Laura and Joe were deeply touched by their experience. In his letter to Mr. Epstein, Joe wrote, “I wanted to express to you personally my sincere gratitude and appreciation for the quality of staff and service which your hospital provides. From the day of surgery to the day of discharge every encounter with hospital staff and technology was handled with skill, respect and compassion that left this patient grateful for having found Chambersburg Hospital.”

We’re proud of our physicians, nurses, caregivers, social workers, housekeepers, and therapists who go the extra mile each and every day. They’ve left a life-long impression upon many grateful patients and their families….both near and far.

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