Houston Methodist The Woodlands Hospital reunites stroke patients with their hospital and EMS care teams

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Darin McKenzie and Marquis Clarke (center) reunite with the men and women who cared for and treated them at the times of their strokes during a special event at Houston Methodist The Woodlands Hospital.

Houston Methodist The Woodlands Hospital hosted a reunion event that gave stroke patients the unique opportunity to meet the men and women who cared for them, from the time their families called 911 through their recovery process.

Dr. Nhu Bruce, medical director of the hospital’s stroke program, welcomed patients and their families before presenting a video that showcased the remarkable stories of two patients – blogger, Marquis Clarke of Montgomery and Darin McKenzie, owner of McKenzie’s Barbecue in Conroe.

Following the video, Bruce reunited Clarke and McKenzie with the EMS crews that initiated their treatment, as well as their ER physicians and nurses and the comprehensive stroke team that worked diligently toward their positive outcomes.

“For me, once EMS arrived at my house, I had already completely lost my vision, so I have never been able to put a face to their voices until now,” said Clarke. “It was such an amazing experience getting the privilege to reconnect with my entire team and the people that helped me have a successful outcome that day. Their training and giftedness truly blessed our family and we are forever grateful.”

“I got to meet a lot of the people that were involved in my care – from the EMS guys to some of the nurses that were in the OR when they did my procedure – to the ER doctor and the therapists that had such an important role in my recovery,” said McKenzie.

Dr. Sabih Effendi, the neurosurgeon who treated both Clarke and McKenzie as well as many other patients who attended the event, said the luncheon allowed patients to understand the breadth and depth of the stroke program at Houston Methodist The Woodlands by highlighting all teams involved in a patient’s care – EMS, the emergency department, neurology and neurosurgery, ICU and rehabilitation.

“This event really signified the coalescing of many people working really hard, starting with family members, who usually identify the stroke in the patient, and then the EMS providers who move so quickly, evaluating and triaging the patient to the correct center,” added Effendi.

“Patients who go through trauma like this see so many people that they don’t typically get the opportunity to really connect, but this event allowed them to connect with all the people who looked after them, which is also great closure for our providers,” said Dr. Robert Dickson, medical director of Montgomery County Hospital District. “To see some of those patients who were completely disabled and now be back to their normal selves – it’s phenomenal and it speaks to the power of the system we have all collectively built.”

Following the event, guests were invited to stay for the hospital’s first stroke support group. The group is open to any stroke patients in the northern Houston region and occurs every third Wednesday of the month from 4 – 5:30 p.m. at Houston Methodist Physical Therapy & Rehabilitation at The Woodlands, 7990 State Hwy. 242, The Woodlands, Texas,77385.

Visit houstonmethodist.org/events to register.

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