Ralph Albracht Heads Home With Cheers and Applause

May 18, 2020

Hospital workers at Northwest Texas Healthcare System lined the hallways on April 15 to celebrate the discharge of their first recovered COVID-19 patient, Ralph Albracht.

Albracht, 78, spent about three weeks at Northwest, receiving specialized care and getting to know the staff, including nurses and doctors in the ICU, members of the hospital’s inpatient rehab team, and others who cared for him.​ He was met with cheers and applause on his trip down the hallway before heading home. He stood to deliver a speech to the team that saved his life.

“It’s because of the grace of God and love and support from my wife and family and many prayers on my behalf that I am well today,” he said.

“To the staff at Northwest Hospital, it is because of your tender love and care that I am going home today. The love and care you have shown me over the past few weeks has been overwhelming.” – Ralph Albracht

Erika Soria, BSN, RN, CCRN, nurse manager of Adult Critical Care, was among those celebrating Albracht’s recovery. She recalled the staff helping him see his wife on an iPad before he went on a ventilator, and also shared how the rehab team pushed him “to do a little more each day,” as Albracht described it, to help him prepare for his return home.

“Watching him walk out of here was beautiful,” Soria says. “It gave reassurance that no matter how big or how small, we can overcome this as a team.”