OCEAN SPRINGS, MS (WLOX) - "I came in Wednesday night, and I had a cardiac cath Thursday morning and a triple bypass on Friday," explained Daphne Richardson.
Wednesday morning, Richardson thought she was healthy. Now she's at Ocean Springs hospital recovering from a heart attack, and she never saw it coming.
"To me it's a big deal," she said. "I don't know about everybody else, but it's a big deal to me."
Her condition is very serious, but it's shockingly common in Mississsippi. Just last year, Ocean Springs Hospital performed over 200 heart surgeries. That's why it just opened a state of the art Progressive Care Unit for patients with cardiovascular problems. The hospital had a similar unit before, but the new one better serves the needs of patients and doctors.
"This new unit to me is really a step in the right direction in terms of streamlining care and providing world class service to Jackson County," said Dr. Richard Eubanks.
As a cardiovascular surgeon, he spends alot of time in the progressive care unit. He says it is unique because it completely separates cardiovascular patients from the rest of the hospital. That's never been done before at Ocean Springs Hospital, and it will greatly decrease the risk to patients.
"You keep the patients who have had heart surgery away from those who may have been admitted from pneumonia or have colon problems, so it's an isolating unit as well," Eubanks said.
Some other features are wall handlebars, state of the art technology, and antibacterial counters.
"I have everything I need," Richardson said. "Any time you're into a rundown hospital, you don't feel like the care's the best in the world, but when you're in a clean nice unit, it gives you the feeling of better care."
It's the hospital's way of making it easier to cope with heart disease.