• ‘Precious moment’ for elderly couple in hospital

    Hospitals can feel lonely, especially being separated from family, so nurses at Epworth Richmond found a way to reunite an elderly couple not used to being apart.

    Noel, 83, and Helen, 80, who have been married for nearly six decades, were both confined to their beds during the process of different surgeries at the Melbourne facility.

    Noel was preparing for a significant cardiac procedure, while his wife was recovering from an orthopaedic operation.

    Both were unwell and their wards were located at opposite ends of the city's largest private hospital.

    However, they were brought together for a heart-warming moment by Cardiac Nurse Unit Manager Charles Bonavia and Orthopaedic Nurse Unit Manager Yasmine Previdi, who arranged a nurse escort for Helen and found a room where they could safely meet.

    “I was so glad this was able to be organised, as it was a precious moment indeed,” Mr Bonavia said.

    “The couple were so grateful for this arrangement. I think their smiles and ours said it all. Noel is now recuperating after his operation, with Helen visiting a number of times since then. 

    “I am sure this will assist Noel on his road to recovery and we wish them both all the best.”

    Nurse Unit Managers Charles Bonavia and Yasmine Previdi with a reunited Noel and Helen

    Ms Previdi said it was “the first time in many years” the couple had been apart and unable to see each other.

    “Our Epworth team were so happy we were able to have them spend time together before Noel’s surgery. Their faces lit up when they saw one another!” she said. 

    “We have heard lots of stories and found out that Helen was actually born in our Bethesda ward at Epworth Richmond. We can't wait to hear more about the couple's upcoming 58-year wedding anniversary celebrations."

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