When the Burn Trauma Center staff find a kindred spirit.

Burn patient keeps sense of humor and strong spirit

One could say Bill Emigh from Gates County, N.C. has both bad and good luck.

The bad luck:

While hunting with his sons, an aluminum pole he was carrying accidentally connected with a power line. Within seconds, his skin was badly burned.

He was taken to the Burn Trauma Unit at Sentara Norfolk General Hospital and put into a medically induced coma for a month.

Once awake, Bill worked on recovering, showing a great attitude along the way.

He told a reporter:

"I lost a lot of weight, but not a lot of spirit," he said.

Bill then asked his former nurse to checkout his new legs.

"Feel how smooth they are. No stubble," he said. 

Good luck: connecting with the care team 

His dedication and good nature fit well with the Burn Trauma Unit staff.  

There, nurses, nutritionists, therapists and social workers collaborate on cases to determine the best care for a patient and how to lift his spirits.

Clinical Care Coordinator Terri Benson says staff members even deliver special foods when patients want something other than hospital food day after day.

It’s all part of the getting to know the person and earning their trust.


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