Feeling Like You Belong - An HSNT Patient Story

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When Magdaline Ewoko’s young granddaughter took her blood pressure, it was initially just to test out the blood pressure machine. She was visiting her family members in Gainesville, and the topic of blood pressure and diabetes came up among the older family members, and so her granddaughter took the machine and went around the room wanting to take everybody’s blood pressure for fun.

“She said she will start with me, so we all laughed because she was doing it for fun,” Magdaline says. “When she took it, we realized that my blood pressure was too high.”

Magdaline’s daughter took her to Texas Presbyterian Hospital in Denton, where she was examined, but afterwards the hospital referred her to Health Services of North Texas. At HSNT, they said, Magdaline could receive care and start her journey into establishing a medical home for herself.

Her first visit was in November 2019 with a previous HSNT provider, but after that initial visit Magdaline has seen Tabitha Muriuki, FNP. 

“When I stepped in [for my first visit] the staff asked me if I needed help, and I said yes and explained everything. [The receptionist] gave me a form to fill and she told me that if I didn’t understand anything that she was here to help me. I said to myself ‘yes, this is the place I belong.’”

“When [the Medical Assistants] call my name, [Tabitha] comes to greet me, we talk a little bit, we laugh, and then she started asking questions about my health. She advises me on how to take my medications. We have a great relationship as a provider and a patient.”

Magdaline is an immigrant to America from Cameroon, in Central Africa. Compared to back in her home country, she says that the care is completely different.

“I appreciate the staff a lot, because when you need help, they do it quickly and with a smile,” Magdaline says. “If you need anything, they attend to you. Last time that I came, I told Tabitha I had a toothache, and she just went right to the staff and got the list of dentists offices that I could see. I feel so good about that.”

Even as an older woman from Central Africa, Magdaline praises the equity of care she has experienced.

“You take care of so many people, so many backgrounds, cultures, and you don’t discriminate. [No matter the person], you attend to them nicely. I’ve never seen anyone shout at anybody. I’ve never seen them talk in an ill manner to somebody.”

Magdaline is grateful for the help that HSNT has provided to her and the peace of mind she has received. Her blood pressure is under control and she’s glad to call HSNT her medical home.

“To come here, the people in charge ask you if you need help, and they’re ready to help. Even if you’re feeling pain, you feel relief. You feel that this is where you belong.”

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