Methodist Healthcare System | Keeping Well | Winter 2023

2 KEEPINGWELL —WINTER 2023 Methodist Healthcare opens freestanding emergency room in New Braunfels Methodist Healthcare has opened its newest neighborhood freestanding emergency room (FSER), Methodist ER | New Braunfels. Located in the City of New Braunfels at 1850 TX-46, #109, the facility will provide exceptional care to adult and pediatric patients, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Specially trained ER and trauma physicians, registered nurses and other medical staff are eager to deliver quality, compassionate care to families throughout New Braunfels and the surrounding communities. “I am thrilled that we are extending Methodist-quality emergency services to our neighbors in the City of New Braunfels,” said Michael Beaver, CEO at Methodist Hospital | Northeast. “As our community grows, we are dedicated to providing access to the highest quality of emergency healthcare close to home.” Methodist ER | New Braunfels will feature continuous patient monitoring and testing, a Picture Archiving Communications System (PACS) to digitally transmit electronic images, diagnostic equipment including a 64-slice CT scanner, a dedicated x-ray suite, ultrasound, and telemetry equipment, as well as full-service laboratory and radiology capabilities. Air Force veteran receives lifesaving liver transplant “Everyone’s [transplant recipients] journey is different, but we all have the same end-goal,” says Hector Villarreal, liver transplant recipient. It was a long and rocky road to liver transplantation for Hector, but well worth it. Not only did he cheat death several times, but he lived to see his daughter get married and meet his grandson. In 2022, he also organized a Veteran’s Day reunion for those who served with him in the Air Force in Germany. Hector moved from Houston to San Antonio in 2008. Overwhelmed by life, he turned to alcohol. A medical procedure gave him access to hydrocodone. He continued drinking alcohol and became addicted. He then was diagnosed with cirrhosis, a chronic disease of the liver. In 2016, he experienced encephalopathy, a reaction of the brain to his condition. Hector spent eight days in the ICU, where he experienced hallucinations and was near death. Hector needed to be alcohol-free to become eligible for a liver transplant. In January 2017, Hector suffered from pneumonia. His liver was worn out. The family began preparing for his passing. Hector went into septic shock in April. He did not think he would make it, but he did. In June, he was back in the hospital needing transfusion, and palliative care was suggested. On June 21, 2017, he was transferred to Methodist Hospital | Specialty and Transplant in very poor condition. Fortunately, Hector was set for transplant surgery on July 29. Throughout his transplant journey, Hector experienced a lot of anxiety, stress, and depression; luckily, he had the support of the liver transplant team and his wife, Darlene. “I was very well taken care of by all the staff at Methodist Hospital | Specialty and Transplant,” he said. “They are very professional in what they do.” “The first thing I do every morning is thank God and ask him to help me fight the pressure to drink alcohol,” Hector said. Ready to give back, Hector is part of the liver transplant support group at the hospital and volunteers at the Texas Organ Sharing Alliance, raising awareness of organ donation. To learn more about liver transplantation and other treatment options at Methodist Hospital | Specialty and Transplant, visit Liver-Cancer. Hector Villarreal (center) coordinated a Veteran’s Day reunion with Air Force companions who served with him in Germany. CHEATING DEATH