From UF Health North to UF Health Jacksonville, patient gives staff an A+

Published: April 5th, 2016

Category: News & Announcements

Mark and Virginia Palmer

Mark and Virginia Palmer

Severe, crippling abdominal pain gripped 54-year-old Mark Palmer while at home one August morning in 2015. Having a hard time standing up straight, Mark called his neighbor, who drove him to the closest medical facility — UF Health North.

Staff met Mark immediately when he arrived at the emergency room and settled him into a wheelchair. He was quickly admitted and moved into a bed. This might not be a memorable moment for most patients, especially when in excruciating pain, but Mark remembers it well.

“When I laid in (the) bed at UF Health North, it was the most comfortable bed I’ve ever been in in my life,” he said. “I didn’t want to get out of it. That bed was unbelievable.”

The nurses checked Mark’s vital signs, and laboratory tests and imaging studies were obtained. After reviewing the results, the emergency medicine physician came in to tell Mark he had acute appendicitis.

“Are you sure?” Mark asked. With a previous history of diverticulitis, Mark was certain it was a recurrence. The doctor confirmed the diagnosis of acute appendicitis and explained he would need to be transferred to UF Health Jacksonville for surgery.

While he waited for an ambulance to arrive to transfer him, he enjoyed his brief stay at the north facility. “It was excellent,” he said. “It couldn’t have been any better. The facility, the equipment and the personnel — you just can’t get any better care. Any time you’re rushed to the hospital, it’s not fun, but the care was great.”

Mark arrived at the Eighth Street location in the late afternoon and immediately headed into surgery.

“Everything about that place was amazing,” Mark said. “The nurses that cared for me — I’ll never forget them. They did such a good job, every one of them. I have to give it an A+.”

Mark has been back to both locations to visit the staff who cared for him. He is extremely appreciative and is especially thankful that the hospital exists.

“This area needed UF Health North,” he said. “There wasn’t a good, close facility to go to. It’s right there, and it’s state-of-the-art. It’s impossible to get that care anywhere (else) in this area.”

With Mark’s chronic condition, he has spent time in other hospitals, but tells people UF Health North and UF Health Jacksonville are the best around.

Thanks to the excellent care Mark received at both UF Health locations, he is feeling better.

“I’ve experienced other hospitals,” Mark said. “It couldn’t have been faster, and I don’t think they could have done any better. They saved my life, it’s that simple. I owe them everything. I’m very thankful.”