Back to Top Skip to main content Skip to sub-navigation

COVID-19 patient treated at Evans

Image of Woman in wheelchair wearing a mask, being wheeled out of hospital surrounded by crowd applauding. Evans Army Community Hospital staff and patients celebrate July 10, 2020, the successful COVID-19 recovery and discharge of Joyce Woffenden. Joyce and her husband, Retired Army Sgt. 1st Class George Woffenden, prepared to head home together after Joyce spent 53 days at EACH on Fort Carson, Colorado.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | Convalescent Plasma Collection Program

The COVID-19 Convalescent Plasma (CCP) Collection Program is a Department of Defense effort to obtain 10,000 units CCP with emphasis on blood donations by members of the military community who have recovered from the disease. CCP will be given to critically ill patients, and to support the development of an effective treatment against the disease. Potential donors should visit the Armed Services Blood Program website at: https://www.militaryblood.dod.mil/Donors/COVID-19andBloodDonation.aspx - to find a complete list of available collection centers."

Throughout their 56 years of marriage, Joyce and George Woffenden have endured celebrations and challenges together, but nothing prepared them for this experience.

When Joyce Woffenden tested positive for COVID-19 and was admitted to Evans Army Community Hospital (EACH) on May 18, 2020, George Woffenden faced the difficult possibility of losing his wife and best friend.

Joyce Woffenden, who worked at Fort Carson for about 22 years, initially visited EACH for kidney stone treatment, but a positive COVID-19 test put her plans on hold and her symptoms required admission for inpatient care.

“While she was in the hospital, the doctors called me every day to give me an update,” said George Woffenden. “She had setbacks during her stay.”

Those setbacks included Joyce Woffenden being intubated and inhibiting her ability to speak.

“She was on life support and needed a ventilator to help her breathe,” said Alexz Planica, an Intensive Care Unit nurse who cared for Joyce Woffenden throughout her stay. “She would communicate on a whiteboard to staff while she was intubated.”

Joyce Woffenden would let the staff know she wanted fresh air but that wasn’t possible during most of her stay. To help cope, her room was decorated with photos of family and friends-even a photo of Joyce Woffenden on a motorcycle.

“Her family would call for updates and send cards; they were very involved,” said Planica. “Joyce didn’t watch the news, but she turned to her faith to keep her spirits up.”

This included visits with Army Maj. Matthew Canada, chaplain at EACH, who visited regularly for Joyce Woffenden’s spiritual care and brought her a radio so she could listen to music.

While visits from family were not possible, George Woffenden relied on daily phone call updates from physicians attending to Joyce Woffenden. Then something extraordinary happened.

The EACH telemedicine team went to visit George Woffenden and set up video teleconferencing in their home.

“It was awesome,” said George Woffenden. “The team came to my house to set up the computer so we could talk.”

Even though Joyce Woffenden couldn’t speak much with George Woffenden, Planica said Joyce Woffenden began to turn a corner and improve when she was able to see him.

In addition to VTC being used to speak with family, the EACH staff leveraged telemedicine resources to bring in specialty doctors throughout the Military Health System.

“We used eICU (electronic Intensive Care Unit) with services from Madigan Army Medical Center, Brooke Army Medical Center and Naval Medical Center San Diego,” said Nate Evans, doctor, and one of Joyce Woffenden’s attending physicians and the Internal Medicine Clinic chief. “We used their critical care physicians, nurses and also some specialists. By linking up with military medical facilities across the country, we provided a higher level of care that helped ensure she could stay at Evans.”

During her stay, she was also the first patient to receive convalescent plasma at EACH.

“She got individualized care from multiple specialty doctors for a long period of time,” said Evans, who was also involved in preparing EACH for COVID-19 earlier in the year. “Our staff is more comfortable with taking more COVID-19 patients because of what they learned taking care of Joyce.”

A variety of specialty doctors provided care during her stay. As Joyce Woffenden was getting better, physical therapy specialists were there to help her stand and begin to walk while she was on a ventilator, according to Evans.

“I’m so proud of what we did as a team at this hospital,” said Planica. “We don’t have those acute resources a Level 1 hospital would have, but we came through when we had to. It was the little things, like whoever got her a radio so she could listen to her music, or arranging video calls.”

Fortunately, after a 52-day stay at EACH, Joyce Woffenden was released with George Woffenden right by her side her July 10, 2020.

“Here she is getting discharged today thanks to all the professional people—nurses, doctors and therapists,” said George Woffenden, a retired Army sergeant first class who previously served at Fort Carson. “They never gave up.”

“I wanted everyone to know how much I appreciate everything they’ve done for her,” said George Woffenden. “I couldn’t have asked for better care. We both give all the credit to the Lord and the staff. We feel he guided them.”

“You’d think after 56 years, we’d be tired of one another,” said George Woffenden. Not so – as they departed EACH and returned to their life in the country.

You also may be interested in...

Latasha Smith: Warrior against COVID-19

Article Around MHS
2/18/2022
Military personnel looking at a patient's cardiac rhythm

Air Force Tech. Sgt. Latasha Smith, an Airman assigned to the 86th Operational Medical Readiness Squadron, was celebrated as Airlifter of the Week, Jan. 27, 2022, after leading the assault against COVID-19 for over a year.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus

Military Medical Units Support Civilian Hospitals Strained By COVID-19 Surge

Article
2/14/2022
Air Force Staff Sgt. Bradley Gorman, a medical technician assigned to a military medical team deployed to Yuma, Arizona performs a nasal swab at the Yuma Regional Medical Center’s COVID testing drive-thru in Yuma, Jan. 17, 2022.

Thousands of service members have been supporting civilian hospitals with testing, vaccinations and treatment of seriously ill patients.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus

COVID-19 therapeutics support DOD pandemic response

Article Around MHS
2/11/2022
Military personnel getting COVID-29 doses ready

The U.S. Army Medical Materiel Agency is helping to protect the operational force by distributing several new therapeutic options that help to lessen the symptoms of mild-to-moderate cases of COVID-19 and keep Soldiers, their families and beneficiaries out of the hospital.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus

COVID-19 Health Action Response for Marines continues to study long-term effects of COVID-19 on Marines

Article Around MHS
2/10/2022
Medical military personnel talking to a patient

A team composed of U.S. Navy medical personnel and civilian technicians based out of the Naval Medical Research Center in Silver Spring, Maryland, assembled during the initial outbreak of COVID-19 to study the short and long-term effects that the virus has on Marines. 

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus

Does CSM Gragg Have COVID-19?

Video
2/9/2022
Does CSM Gragg Have COVID-19?

CSM Gragg demonstrates how to use a COVID-19 at home rapid test.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus and the COVID-19 Vaccine | At-Home COVID-19 Tests | Coronavirus

Getting up-to-date on your COVID-19 vaccine

Article Around MHS
2/8/2022
Military personnel giving the COVID-19 vaccine

The U.S. Guard Coast is that we have vaccines to help prevent serious illness if you contract COVID-19.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus

DOD COVID-19 Practice Management Guide Version 8

Technical Document
1/31/2022

This Practice Management Guide does not supersede DOD Policy. It is based upon the best information available at the time of publication. It is designed to provide information and assist decision making. It is not intended to define a standard of care and should not be construed as one. Neither should it be interpreted as prescribing an exclusive course of management. It was developed by experts in this field. Variations in practice will inevitably and appropriately occur when clinicians take into account the needs of individual patients, available resources, and limitations unique to an institution or type of practice. Every healthcare professional making use of this guideline is responsible for evaluating the appropriateness of applying it in the setting of any particular clinical situation. The Practice Management Guide is not intended to represent TRICARE policy. Further, inclusion of recommendations for specific testing and/or therapeutic interventions within this guide does not guarantee coverage of civilian sector care. Additional information on current TRICARE benefits may be found at www.tricare.mil or by contacting your regional TRICARE Managed Care Support Contractor.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | COVID-19 Information for Military Treatment Facility Directors

Oregon National Guard surging to support hospitals again

Article Around MHS
1/27/2022
Oregon Army National Guard touring a hospital

Hundreds of Oregon National Guard members are increasing support of hospitals throughout the state in their second hospital relief mission during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | Readiness Capabilities

Public Health nurses offer insights on living with COVID-19 now, looking into future

Article Around MHS
1/25/2022
The Challenges of Living with COVID

One of the more challenging jobs for any public health professional is dealing with unpredictability inherent in outbreaks like the current COVID-19 pandemic.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus

Do You Have COVID-19? Influenza? Or is it RSV? Here’s What to Look For

Article
1/24/2022
Military personnel preparing a COVID-19 test sample for processing

Knowing the symptoms of COVID-19/RSV/Flu will help your medical treatment

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus and the COVID-19 Vaccine | Seasonal Influenza Vaccine Toolkit | Coronavirus

Medical Leaders Address COVID-19 Concerns During Family Forum

Article
1/21/2022
Navy Petty Officer 3rd Class Jemuel Macabali, from San Diego, Calif., gives the COVID-19 vaccine to staff at Camp Lemonnier, in Djibouti, Aug. 13, 2021.

Top health leaders talk about the recent spike in COVID-19 infections and the impact on the military community.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus

Navy Hospital Corpsman steps into the breach in the war on COVID-19

Article Around MHS
1/18/2022
Hospitalman Hector Conde standing in front of a immunization office's refrigeration

First responders and those fighting on the medical battleground have earned well-deserved recognition for their efforts.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus

Critically ill COVID Patient Delivers Baby While on Heart-Lung Bypass

Article
1/11/2022
Retired U.S. Marine Corps Gunnery Sgt. Carlos Hernandez and his wife, Ashley, take a family portrait with their six children. Ashley is BAMC’s first patient to give birth while on Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation.

Hernandez, a Marine Corps spouse and mother of five, is BAMC’s first patient to give birth while on Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation.

Recommended Content:

Women's Health | Coronavirus

Got Your 6 - Jan. 3, 2022

Video
1/4/2022
Got Your 6 -  Jan. 3, 2022

‘Got Your 6’ is TRICARE’s COVID vaccine video series that delivers important information and updates, on days that end in ‘6.’ It includes the latest information about DOD vaccine distribution, the TRICARE health benefit, and vaccine availability. Got a question about ‘Got Your 6’? Send an email to dha.ncr.comm.mbx.dha-internal-communications@mail.mil Find your local military provider at tricare.mil/MTF, or go to tricare.mil/vaccineappointments and schedule yours today!

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus and the COVID-19 Vaccine | Coronavirus | COVID-19 Vaccine Efforts | Getting the COVID-19 Vaccine

This is my Why

Article Around MHS
12/30/2021
Air Force Senior Airman Marcus Bullock poses for a photo after receiving his COVID-19 vaccination

Air Force Senior Airman Marcus Bullock stated his reason for getting the vaccine was to help his mother and son be able to have a play date again.

Recommended Content:

COVID-19 Vaccine Efforts | Coronavirus
<< < 1 2 3 4 5  ... > >> 
Showing results 16 - 30 Page 2 of 30
Refine your search
Last Updated: August 10, 2020

DHA Address: 7700 Arlington Boulevard | Suite 5101 | Falls Church, VA | 22042-5101

Some documents are presented in Portable Document Format (PDF). A PDF reader is required for viewing. Download a PDF Reader or learn more about PDFs.