St. Helena Hospital Foundation celebrated a generous gift from the Weeman Family with a ribbon cutting ceremony on Oct. 13. The St. Helena No Wait ER has been named in their honor. The Weeman Family Emergency Center honors the gift of life and those that serve the community through medical intervention and comfort in times of need.
A year ago Ken Weeman became overwhelmed with severe chest pain. His wife, Kathryn, rushed him to the emergency room at St. Helena Hospital Napa Valley. Upon arriving to the emergency room, Ken was seen immediately by Dr. Rodney Look, an ER physician who described the situation as "critical."
Suddenly Ken's eyes fluttered and a nurse called out "Code Blue" as he went into full cardiac arrest. At the very moment Kathryn thought she may have lost her husband a compassionate housekeeper named Maria comforted her and assured her that it would be all right. In most cases, a medical team will try for approximately five minutes to revive a stopped heart before surrendering to a patient's condition. However, Dr. Look had a hunch about Ken, and instructed the team to continue to work on him. The team worked diligently for a full 18 minutes before they finally got a pulse. Thanks to the timely care and expertise of the physicians and staff, Ken was able to survive a near fatal heart attack.
Terry Newmyer, president and CEO of the St. Helena region, welcomed a small group to the newly named "Weeman Family Emergency Center" on Thursday to celebrate and formally accept a generous gift from the Weeman Family. St. Helena Hospital Foundation board member Jim Gamble said, "I was inspired by their story." He and many others that were present expressed their gratitude not only for the Weeman donation, but also for sharing their incredible and very personal experience.
"What the emergency team did for the Weemans that day is part of our mission," said Steve Lundin, St. Helena Hospital Foundation president. "We thank them for their generosity in helping us to fulfill our campaign."
"This is about gratitude, we are thankful for the medical team," said Ken Weeman.
In appreciation for the high quality of physicians, staff and the overall high standards of practice that saved Ken's life, the Weemans wanted to ensure that this no wait emergency service is always available to others.