The Vibra Rehabilitation Hospital of Denver staff celebrate Natalie Garrett's discharge to home

Natalie Garrett

COVID-19 hit Natalie Garrett hard.

When Natalie tested positive, she was immediately placed into the intensive care unit at her local hospital. Her lungs were in bad shape and she required a ventilator to breathe for her. Natalie had a tracheostomy tube placed, as well as a feeding tube. Despite the supportive care, Natalie was failing to improve. Her family feared the worst.

But Natalie’s sister — a COVID survivor — wouldn’t give up on her. She knew Natalie could do the same.

Slowly, but surely, Natalie began to improve. These slight daily improvements added up, and soon Natalie was ready for the next level of care. She discharged to Vibra Hospital of Denver, a long-term acute care hospital (LTACH) for continued medication management, ventilator weaning, and physical rehabilitation. Natalie spent two weeks at the LTACH where she weaned off the ventilator and built up her tolerance for therapy. Ready for more intensive therapy, Natalie transferred to Vibra Rehabilitation Hospital of Denver, an inpatient rehab hospital.

Breathing on her own again and free from her tracheostomy and feeding tubes, Natalie felt invigorated. She was excited to be eating better, regaining her strength, and working on proper therapy routines with the staff. Because she lives independently at home, Natalie wanted to work hard on the stairs during her therapy sessions. She also looked forward to getting out and walking in the park across from her house when she returned home.

“They all were very important to my getting better, so I would like to thank all of them,” Natalie said of the Vibra staff. She expressed feeling fortunate to be taken care of by both Vibra facilities, which share a campus.

Ready to return home, Natalie walked out of Vibra’s front doors on her own power. Watching her do so, one could really get a sense that Natalie thrived on life. With the support of her large family and network of friends, Natalie is going to succeed for a long time.