Athena Rosario was accustomed to taking care of everyone but herself. When her health needed urgent attention, she was grateful that a mutually trusting relationship with her Erie doctor helped her navigate both the physical and emotional recovery journey.
A few years ago, Athena underwent brain surgery after a tumor was found during a medical checkup. She was assigned to Erie family medicine physician Daisy Wynn for post-surgery care. While recovering from her first tumor operation and a series of other surgeries - including three for a torn meniscus, one for a gastric sleeve, and the other for a gastric bypass - Athena struggled mentally and physically. But Dr. Wynn's understanding nature helped Athena through her emotional journey.
"She helped me in every sense of the way," says Athena. "That year was very trying for me because I worked all my life helping myself, only to start over.” Athena describes her years-long relationship with Dr. Wynn as one of mutual trust and understanding.
"Dr. Wynn helped me find therapy at Erie,” Athena says. “I will also always be grateful for her support during one of the most critical moments in my life. When I got married, I confided in her about my fears of the potential deportation of my wife. Dr. Wynn offered emotional support and wrote a letter advocating for our emotional and physical well-being. Her dedication to my health - in all ways - goes beyond what is expected of a physician," Athena says.
Dr. Wynn explained, "Connecting with a patient is important and crucial to delivering really good care to them. By making the patient feel comfortable sharing everything that's going on, we can treat them as a whole person."
As Athena's physical condition improved, Dr. Wynn helped guide Athena through the disability application process and found alternative medicines to help her manage her weight.
Reflecting on her experience, Athena encourages others to be their own advocates and build a strong rapport with their doctors.
"Everybody deserves the best care, and Erie gives it, but you have to let them know. You must communicate,” said Athena. “If you trust them enough, you're going to go far. I was lucky enough to get that care, and I hope everybody else gets it as well."
Athena recounted how working with Dr. Wynn to get the help she needed had saved her life.
"I hope everybody else has that care, that one-on-one that everyone deserves,” said Athena. “I hope everybody has that same experience, and they get lucky enough to have a Dr. Wynn in their life."