A Christmas wish come true
Patient Stories

A Christmas wish come true

Noela’s road to recovery

Noela, 91 is a beloved mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother, who’s lived in her beautiful family home in Brisbane for more than 60 years.

In October this year, Noela was admitted to The Prince Charles Hospital for treatment of her chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and an existing heart condition. While she was so grateful for the wonderful care she received at the hospital, Noela couldn’t wait to get back to the comfort and familiarity of her own home. It was at the top of her Christmas wish list.

“I knew I was being looked after well in hospital,” she says. “But I was very much looking forward to getting back home and being in my own surroundings and space…I just love my home. I’ve got very happy memories there over all the years.”

Noela’s previous stays in hospital for her health conditions have been between 5 days and two weeks. This stay was by far her longest, but luckily for Noela, she was discharged in November.

“I ended up being in one ward for my lungs and then transferred to the heart ward for my heart, so I was in hospital for about five weeks,” she says. “Because I was so ill, I was restricted to bed and sitting up. I wasn’t doing any walking at all, so I very rapidly lost muscle strength.”

The journey home

With reduced muscle strength, Noela’s mobility decreased dramatically. It’s only through rehab and physiotherapy that she regained enough strength to leave hospital. Noela is determined to continue her physio exercises at home and get stronger before seeing her extended family this Christmas.

“When you’re in your own familiar surroundings, and you’re doing more for yourself, I think that makes you recover quicker,” she says.

Noela sees the value in the projects that The Common Good wishes to support at The Prince Charles Hospital and Caboolture Hospital that will help older patients, like her, to maintain their mobility while they’re in hospital. She understands that having the opportunity to stay active in hospital, in most cases, means a faster recovery and a quicker return to home.

Noela’s Christmas cheer

Noela is a truly special person. She is not only a patient of The Prince Charles Hospital, but she’s also been a wonderful supporter of the hospital community since the 1970s. After her husband underwent open heart surgery at the hospital, the couple wanted to give back. Noela became a beloved ‘Charlie’s Angel’ – one of our adored volunteers who assists patients, visitors, and staff throughout the hospital.

Noela’s face lights up when she speaks about spending Christmas in the company of her loving family instead of the four walls of her hospital room.

When you support The Common Good this festive season, you’re helping to support more patients like Noela to get out of hospital sooner and maintain their independence longer.

Make a donation

Published: December 20, 2022

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