Tonya W.

Tonya W.

After a year-long hospitalization and recovery process Ms. Tonya Ward was able to express her innermost feelings “I don’t know what I would have done without them and I can’t forget about my Vibra family” On March 29, 2016, she returned home to her three children, family, and friends.

Her struggle began when she presented to Southside Regional Medical Center with complaints of severe and re-occurring headaches, which brought her to the emergency room many times. Shortly after her admission in June 2015, she developed severe life-threatening swelling to her airway in which required ventilator support. Despite many attempts to liberate her from the ventilator, she seemed to be unweanable and underwent a tracheostomy to support her long-term respiratory needs.

The medical team at Southside determined that Tonya would benefit from a facility that could continue to manage her complex respiratory needs and she was transferred to Vibra Hospital of Richmond (a Long Term Acute Care Hospital) for continued care. Tonya’s road home began in June of 2015 when she was transferred from Southside Regional Medical Center to Vibra Hospital of Richmond, suffering from Acute Respiratory Failure requiring mechanical ventilator support.
While at Vibra she was managed closely by her multi-interdisciplinary team in which consisted of medical specialty services including pulmonology, respiratory therapy, hospital medicine, nephrology, dietary, PT/OT/ST, nursing and case management. All worked together to ensure that her needs were met.

After months of extensively rehabilitating Tonya and stabilizing her to a point where she no longer
needed the ventilator; the Vibra team of physicians found that she required another major surgery, this time on her thyroid.
This news was devastating to Tonya; It not only hindered her ability to return home but was another barrier to the removal of her tracheostomy tube, one of her personal goals. The Vibra team collaborated with a team of experts at the Medical College of Virginia and Tonya underwent a successful surgery in March 2016, which allowed her to have tracheostomy tube removed.

The Vibra team was very pleased to celebrate with Tonya her transition home to her family and community. Almost everyone working at the hospital that day turned out to cheer her on and received hugs from Tonya in return.

One of Tonya’s most recent social media posts: “Thank You so much for all you have done Vibra, Southside and MCV teams for saving my life”.