Dr. Tracie Terrana and Dr. Rich Johnson were ACCEPTED into the UB Richard T. Sarkin/Emeritus Chapter of the Gold Humanism Honor Society (GHHS)! Your compassion and humanistic care is exemplary. The Gold Humanism Honor Society nationally recognizes and honors medical students, residents/fellows, role-model physicians, teachers and other exemplars who “demonstrate excellence in clinical care, leadership, compassion and dedication to service”. Induction into GHHS is both an honor and a call to service. Dr. Terrana and Dr. Johnson will be inducted at a ceremony on April 25, 2019. Congratulations!
BUFFALO, NY (WIVB) – The first signs of physical burns to her body are obvious when speaking with Sacha de Jesus. She said she feels like this is someone else’s story. She said she cannot believe this has happened to her. Sacha spoke calmly and slowly telling News 4 her story. She does not speak English, but a translator told us what she said happened to her. She said the incident occurred on December 5, 2016. She was working that day at Walmart. She said she had a husband who was very jealous. When Sacha arrived home, he began to accuse her of being with someone else. At that moment, Sacha said he grabbed gasoline and he put it on her and set her on fire. Sacha said she went running to the bathroom to cover herself with water and get in the shower. He went in there and closed the door and would not let her out, she said. Sacha was eventually taken to the ECMC burn unit. She said she only remembers saying one thing in that moment. “Please don’t let me die,” Sacha told the person who received here at ECMC. In the mean time, her father was having a similar conversation with Dr. Jim Lukan. “I told him that I didn’t think she’d make it through the first 24 hours. If she did that, I didn’t think she’d leave the hospital. He had complete confidence that she’d leave the hospital. He was right,” said Lukan. Sacha survived. She would not have a new memory for two months. She woke up, bound to her bed, with 85% burns to her body. “When you’ve got an 85% burn, it hurts to just move your arm, to move your wrist, move your fingers, and to get through that. It’s a struggle,” said Lukan. The ECMC’s burn unit treated more than 200 patients in 2018. But not all needed care this serious. They treat anything, from burns like Sacha’s, to sunburns, and even minor burns from cooking. Dr. Lukan said what makes the burn unit so unique is the people. “I think all burn units have the same people and the same components. They all have that. I don’t think they have what we do. That is where everyone has a voice and everyone influences how the patient does,” said Dr. Lukan. The staff call Sacha their biggest save. She eventually went back home to Jamestown with her family. She admits that some days have been harder than others. Sacha said that actually the hardest thing for her was when she saw herself with no hair. The next thing, she says, was her breast. They were gone and they were burned. News 4 was there when she went back to the burn unit for another reconstructive surgery. This one would improve the burns to her face. She was reunited with the staff who she calls family after she spent four months in the unit. Sacha said she can be in so much pain, but she will find it in her to keep walking. That is because everyone is so happy to see her. While Sacha’s world has changed so drastically, she somehow stays positive. “Participation is huge. You say “how can a patient participate when they’re laying in bed?” Well, they can. They can have a spirit that gets them through it. Sacha had that. That’s why she’s here,” said Dr. Lukan. This is just the start of a long road for Sacha’s recovery. Dr. Lukan said they will likely see her for many more years for reconstructive surgery and other treatments. Luis Castro Mojica, Sacha’s ex-husband, pleaded guilty to first degree assault last month. He was supposed to be sentenced on Monday, February 25. The courts were closed because of the weather. The Chautauqua County District Attorney said he will spend between 18-21 years in prison.