On Easter Sunday in 2011, Rick Rush had a heart attack that could have been fatal. Thanks to the quick action of Dr. Samer Kazziha, Director of Cardiovascular Services, Rick had two stents placed in his heart less than an hour after arriving in Crittenton’s Emergency Department. “I thought there would be hours of tests, but Dr. Kazziha was pushing the gurney to the OR within minutes.” Two years later, Rick still greets Dr. Kazziha with these words: Thank you, doctor, for saving my life.
Just a few days later, Dr. Kazziha placed three additional stents in Rick’s heart to reduce risk of future heart attacks. Facing a long recovery, Rick credits Crittenton’s Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation Program with helping him regain strength and develop healthy habits. Though initially reluctant, after twelve weeks of mandatory rehab sessions, Rick was hooked: “I started going two years ago, and I still look forward to it every Tuesday and Friday morning.” Not only has Rick’s health benefited from the program, he and others in his group formed a strong bond. “Your life changes after a heart attack, and it’s helpful to talk to people with similar experiences.”
Though Rick and his wife, Gayle, have been Crittenton donors and volunteers for years, supporting the Hospital is now even more meaningful. “Without Crittenton, I know I would not be here today.”