Together our community cared for Auggie Goller

Augustus Goller is almost four years old. He’s a sweet kid, already learning how to print, and ahead of his age in knowing his numbers. He goes by Auggie, a nickname that suits him well.

Just a month ago, Auggie spent six days at Guelph General, where he was treated for severe respiratory distress. When his parents, Linzy and Rodrigo, retell the story, it’s clear that it was a scary and highly emotional experience for them all.

Auggie had been under the weather with an ear and throat infection for a few days in early December. Still, he bounced back quickly with the usual antibiotics. Then, a few days later, he became lethargic, had no appetite, and had a very high temperature. Linzy and Rodrigo hurried Auggie to the after-hours clinic, where the physician watched his breathing and sent them immediately to the hospital ER.  

Auggie was whisked through triage, and it was obvious to his parents that the staff were concerned: the X-rays and blood tests determined that the little guy had both pneumonia and RSV. He was placed on oxygen, antibiotics and IV fluids. After a night in the Emergency Department, because beds were in short supply on the ward, he was transferred to the pediatric unit, where he stayed for five more nights.

Auggie is fine now. Linzy gets emotional when she talks about the care he received at GGH. “Everyone was so professional and so compassionate. I know the hospital was over capacity, but you wouldn’t know it from the attention staff paid to our toddler. Even though there were so many patients with so many needs, they monitored Auggie regularly, ensuring he was doing well. While there, we met one nurse who worked in ICU yet volunteered to take extra shifts in Pediatrics because she knew there was a need. I’m amazed and grateful that they work so hard for their patients in such difficult and dire times.”

Rodrigo remembers how even though there were patients with more urgent needs in the ED, the nurses checked in often, offering popsicles to Auggie and assurances to them. He summed it up with “Ward quality care in the ER.”  

Rodrigo, a municipal councillor in Guelph, also understands service efficiencies. “We all like to know that our tax dollars are used well. Here, they certainly are. The staff make wine out of water with their care and dedication.” He also knows that the funds for GGH are only partly covered by the Province. Our community raises the dollars for the equipment and supplies that helped Auggie.

Both parents mention the relief and gratitude they experienced knowing that the generous people of Guelph helped cover their child’s hospital stay, diagnostic tests, and medications. Auggie’s just glad to be home.