A Lifeline To Patients On The Road To Recovery

07 Jun 2024

In November last year, life changed dramatically for 25-year-old Jason Burke.

While stopped at an emergency bay on the Bruce Highway near Gympie, he was hit by truck, narrowing escaping with his life.

Jason was left with a brain and spinal injury, a punctured lung and fractures throughout his body.

Jason Burke

The budding-Occupational Therapist has spent most of this year in hospital and was able to stay at Wishlist Centre while accessing the Sunshine Coast University Hospital’s (SCUH) Neuro Intensive Rehabilitation (NIR) service.

“Leaving hospital, I wasn’t sure where I was going to be,” Jason says.

“I was concerned I would go back to Hervey Bay where there was no rehab – so when I heard about Wishlist, it was a saving grave for me.

“It allowed me to come across to the hospital and continue rehab… Because I know how important early intervention is so important.”   

Another young person in the NIR program is Amber Hill, who recently spent four weeks at SCUH after a harrowing high-speed motorcycle accident.

Being 220km from her home in Childers, Amber was able to stay at Wishlist House so she could attend rehab daily without added stress.

“After the crash, I was easily triggered. I was on edge all the time. I had damaged the parts of my brain responsible for logic and reasoning,” Amber says.

“I needed help with perception and emotional management and increase my motor control, as the motor control for my left side had been affected."

Amber has been riding motorcycles on track since early October 2022, but on August 5 2023, she crashed into a concrete barricade at 160km/h.
"I sustained a severe traumatic brain injury among other injuries. Needing to learn to walk, talk, eat, drink and speak again.”

Despite the challenges, Amber was determined to push through.

"I knew I had to put in the hard yards now.”

Thanks to the support of donors, patients like Jason and Amber are able to access affordable accommodation close to SCUH while undergoing crucial outpatient treatment.

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