After providing lifesaving care to COVID-19 patients, Jill Holker, a frontline ICU nurse from Utah became a patient herself. The virus caused so much damage to the young, healthy runner’s lungs that she required a double-lung transplant. Jill was brought to UF Health Shands Hospital in Gainesville for a chance to save her life. On Friday, after months in Shands hospital and post-operative rehab, Jill is finally going home.
“There was a handful of people who were fighting for me,” Holker said. “Truly, sincerely fighting for me. And it was staff—people that never knew me.”
Jill is one of 12 COVID-19 patients who have received new lungs from UF Health’s nationally recognized lung transplant team in recent months. When it seems like all hope is lost, patients come to UF Health from across the country looking for a miracle.