Struggling to get a breath in and feeling like he was “choking to death”, Tony de Maaijer knew he was in a bad way.
“I couldn’t sleep all night and became really unwell, my lungs had given out and I knew I had to do something quickly,” Tony recalls.
Fortunately, Tony ended up “in the hands of the most marvellous professionals” - in the Flinders Medical Centre Intensive Care Unit (ICU), where he spent 10 days.
“There were so many people in there who looked after me, and the care I received was amazing,” Tony says.
“All these beautiful people left an impression on me and I wanted to say thank you, and to do something that would benefit the hardworking staff directly.”
In a show of thanks, Tony recently returned to Flinders, making a generous donation of $10,000 to help provide recliners, massage chairs, a coffee machine, and other comforts for the staff in the unit.
ICU nurse Emma Dunstan said Tony’s visit to the unit gave staff a “boost”.
"We’re grateful to Tony for recognising the staff in ICU, particularly during such a challenging time in healthcare” Emma said.
“In the work we do, we don’t often see our patients again after they leave the ward, so to see a patient like Tony standing up, feeling better and recovered after all they’ve been through is really nice.”
Pleasingly Tony has recovered and is feeling well - busily working, enjoying exercise, games of table tennis and looking after his young grandchildren.
If you’re a grateful patient or family member and would like to make a donation to Flinders Foundation to support health and medical research and patient care, please get in touch with our team here or phone 8204 5216 or DONATE NOW
Flinders Foundation acknowledges the Kaurna people as the traditional custodians of the land on which the Flinders precinct was established. We acknowledge the Kaurna people’s deep and ongoing connection to land, waters and community, and pay our respect to their Elders, past and present.