Heart attack survivor applauds the pros at Guelph General’s Emergency Department

Dan Pestill didn’t think there was anything wrong — just some heartburn that wouldn’t go away. But his wife thought differently, so she called their family doctor. The doctor told her to get him to the Emergency Department — immediately!

When he explained his symptoms at Guelph General, he was rushed right through and hooked up to an ECG machine. The doctor was there in minutes. “At that point I still didn’t believe it was serious,” Dan recalls. “I told her I felt great and asked if I could go home.”

Instead, the GGH team put him in an ambulance with the sirens blaring and raced him over to St. Mary’s Hospital, where a cardiac team was waiting. It turns out he had a hundred percent blockage in one of his arteries and needed a stent put in immediately. Twenty-four hours later, Dan was back recovering at Guelph General, and the next day he was ready to be discharged.

When he got home, he had more energy than he’s felt in years. (He also got a lot of grief from his wife and daughters for not going to the hospital earlier.)

Dan applauds Guelph General for the exceptional care he got — especially in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. And that wasn’t the only challenge facing the Emergency team.

While he was there, the hospital announced a Code Orange, which meant the Hospital didn’t have space to admit the 17 patients who were in the Emergency Department that morning. Instead, they had to cancel surgeries and redirect ambulances.

According to Dan, you’d never have known it. “Everybody looking after me carried on calmly and professionally,” he says. “They knew what they were doing, and they did it well.”

Today, Dan is looking forward to Christmas at home — thanks to the Emergency Department team at Guelph General and the community supporters who make sure our professionals have the tools they need.