Life Care Centers of America
Heidi Pino

Life Care Center of Banner Elk, North Carolina, has been a place of healing and a fresh start for Elizabeth Duckworth.

Elizabeth, or, as her friends call her, Miss Ann, had a major heart attack on Sept. 18, 2019. She was shocked back to life three times and put on a ventilator. Two days later, she had open-heart surgery and then developed a life-threatening infection. She was in the hospital for six weeks.

To add to everything, she has had multiple sclerosis since 1992. She was being prayed for by many people across the country.

Miss Ann got out of the hospital and came to Life Care Center of Banner Elk on Oct. 31 to begin her rehabilitation journey. When she arrived, she was bedbound and needed total assistance for most of her self-care. She was also very fearful of falling, even when the therapists worked with her on rolling over in bed. The therapists helped her conquer that fear and have more confidence.

In time, Miss Ann was able to get up and start walking!

The therapy team has helped her come so far – farther than she or her family thought possible.

“With God’s help, lots of prayers, stubbornness on my part and the professionalism of the therapy team, I am a true miracle!” Miss Ann shared. “Thank you for your hard work and determination.”

Now, Miss Ann is at a supervision level for bed mobility, wheelchair mobility, sitting balance, grooming and self-feeding and needs minimal assistance with walking, transfers, standing balance and dressing. She transitioned to long-term care at the facility on Jan. 21, 2020.

“She has made new friends and is participating in activities,” said Elizabeth Goode, director of rehab. “She is a pleasure to have as one of our residents.”

Heart attack survivor gets new lease on life at Life Care of Banner Elk

Additional Images

“Miss Ann” with her late husband, Wayne
Where to Start

Find a Location

Life Care Locations

Life Care operates or manages more than 200 skilled nursing, rehabilitation, Alzheimer's and senior living campuses in 27 states.

Find a Location