SWMC Employee Assists Stroke Victim

Southwestern Orientation Helps Employee Recognize Stroke Symptoms

Last month, Southwestern Medical Center’s new volunteer chaplain’s assistant, Donnell Clark, potentially saved his friend’s life by using what he had learned in his SWMC orientation about stroke. This is Donnell’s account:

“On May 11, 2017, approximately 4:30 p.m., my friend suffered a stroke while at work. He was leaving the building, and as he did so, I gave him the greeting of the day*. He attempted to respond, then I noticed the right side his face was drooping, his tongue was very thick, making it hard to understand his words. So, I told him I would drive him to the hospital. He thought we were going to the hospital on Fort Sill**. I knew his chances of recovery were better with Southwestern Medical Center.

I would like to thank the Southwestern Medical Staff for giving me the opportunity to be a member of a wonderful organization who genuinely lives its mission statement. Also, thank you Southwestern Medical Center for hiring me as a volunteer chaplain’s assistant. Having received an outstanding orientation, it equipped me with the knowledge of recognizing the early symptoms of a stroke victim.”

*The “greeting of the day” is mandatory for service members: “Courtesy among members of the United States Armed Forces is vital to maintaining military discipline. At all times, Service Members will render the proper military courtesy and respect by giving the greeting of the day while approaching a Senior NCO.” – Fort Sill Blue Book

**Fort Sill is an Army base, located in Lawton. They closed their emergency department in 2014 and converted it to an urgent care clinic. If Donnell had taken his friend to Reynolds, as requested, he would have had a delay in his care.

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