Last November, Chuck discovered that having an aortic aneurysm and a related stoke was not the best way to spend his holidays, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite the challenges he faced, he felt blessed to have received the incredible care that followed— from the emergency medical technicians who brought him to Adventist Health Glendale to the remarkable surgeons and nurses in the ICU and rehab units who worked tirelessly to care for him.
“We are so grateful to all the physicians and nurses there. They saved Chuck for us and never forgot the personal touch, even during the pandemic,” his family wrote.
Adventist Health Glendale (AHGL) fulfills its mission to live God’s love by inspiring health, wholeness, and hope for patients. But the pandemic has made it challenging to address whole-person healing with limited human connection.
With Chuck’s hospitalization lasting a month, he and his family saw firsthand how important it is to have family involved in the patient’s healing process—even if it’s virtually, due to hospitals’ “no visitors allowed during the pandemic” policy.
Compassionate nurses went above and beyond to help Chuck connect with his family multiple times a day—generating an abundance of gratitude and reassurance. The family was so grateful that they decided to make a generous donation for more iPads in patient rooms, in honor of the physicians, nurses, and staff in intensive care, critical care, and rehab units. “We hope the iPads can help other families stay connected to their loved ones. It’s such a critical and humane piece of recovery, and we are proud to help in this small way,” said Chuck, now recovered and back home with his family.
Maintaining a quality care experience through Facetime calls and video chats has become part of the new norm, and Adventist Health is committed to providing the necessary resources to help families stay connected. “We are patient experience—everything we say and do affects our patients on many levels: their feelings, thoughts, and overall well-being,” said Grace Kwasman, patient experience director at AHGL. “Showing empathy, communicating compassionately, and listening actively build trust with our patients. It is our duty to always go the extra mile.”
Through the hospital’s new “Together, Apart” initiative, patients are provided with the most advanced care in a safe, comfortable, and healing environment. The goal is to make sure patient stays go as smoothly and pleasantly as possible, with virtual visits and comfort calls from the hospital’s Spiritual Care team.
“Thank you so much for not only saving the life of the person we love most in the world, but also for giving him and our entire family so much kindness and compassion during our darkest hour,” Chuck’s family wrote. “We will never forget that and are honored to make a contribution to the AHGL Foundation.”
Chuck and his family thanked a few registered nurses who went above and beyond to provide exceptional care for him: Miguel Arellano, Samuel Bodin, Shella Cesar, Christian Davis, Alyssa Fason, Linda Gabriel, Ka’Arah McCoy, Brett Miller, Conrad Modelo, Silva Naranjo, and Fatima Siddiqi.
With each encounter, Adventist Health Glendale physicians and nurses witness the immense joy and hope that FaceTime calls and video chats bring to patients—it gives them the strength to keep striving for a better tomorrow.
“We thank our physicians, nurses, and associates for sharing their strength, resilience, and hope with patients like Chuck every day and for making a difference, one family at a time,” Kwasman said.
By Naira Khosrovian