Mount Sterling native Omar Prewitt was hiking with his son at Pilot Knob when he was struck by chest pain that wouldn’t go away.
“Coming down, I started to get a little bit of discomfort in my chest,” he said. “I stopped off at a gas station to get a Tum because I thought that would knock it out. It didn’t take me long to realize the pain was consistent and wasn’t going away. I thought, possibly, I was having a heart attack.”
He knew he had to get to seek immediate care. Prewitt arrived at Saint Joseph Mount Sterling’s emergency room with signs of a heart attack. Staff immediately took him in, and within 10-15 minutes, the pain he felt in his chest began to subside.
“I could tell by the concern from everybody – I knew several of the people taking care of me – there was something wrong,” Prewitt said. “By then, they loaded me into a helicopter and took me to [Saint Joseph Hospital in] Lexington.”
Eighteen minutes later, Prewitt arrived at the Lexington hospital and was in a room with a full staff for a cardiac catheterization.
“Within half an hour, they knocked the clot out,” Prewitt said. “I felt like, at that time, I could walk on out and right back to work. They kept me [at Saint Joseph Hospital] for a few days to monitor me and run tests. I’ve been so fortunate that we had a good hospital to care for me.”
Within that network of care, Prewitt said he was most impressed with the seamless transition from the emergency care at Saint Joseph Mount Sterling to his procedure at Saint Joseph Hospital.
“The way [the staff] reacted when I went in, it was all very quick,” Prewitt said about his visit at the Saint Joseph Mount Sterling emergency room. “There was no hesitation; they were making decisions quickly. I knew a few people who were taking care of me. I could see the concern in their eyes. I knew I was having a heart attack, but I felt calm when I was there, during the helicopter ride and when I got to [Saint Joseph Hospital].”
Even during the novel coronavirus pandemic, Prewitt said he wasn’t worried about going to the emergency room because he knew he needed care.
“I’ve always heard if you’re having a heart attack to get to a hospital as quick as you can,” Prewitt said. “[At the time,] I had a grandchild on the way, and I needed to go to the ER and take care of it. I knew it could be a matter of seconds.”