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Patient Stories


Bethany Leslie

Maternity Patient

New mother experiences a "dream" birth, even during the pandemic


Bethany: I remember when we first found out we were expecting. My husband and I were so excited to prepare to welcome our first child. We read all the books and did all the research, but there was no chapter about giving birth during a pandemic. We weren't sure what to expect going into a hospital setting during this.

While we were at Summa, we definitely felt safe. All of the appropriate measures were taken for social distancing and keeping everyone healthy. The staff at Summa was absolutely incredible. They truly embraced us and encouraged us and treated us like family. We truly believe that God hand selected every single person in that room.

I would say that we had the dream birth experience. Everything happened exactly as it was supposed to. We wouldn't change anything. And now we have little Finn to show for it.


Betsey Enberg

Urogynecology Patient

Betsey suffered from pelvic pain and bloating for several years until she was referred to Summa Health. After a successful hysterectomy and pelvic floor repair surgery, she's back to doing what she loves.  


For years, I was suffering with bloating, discomfort and pain in the pelvic floor area. It was just awful. My gastroenterologist referred me to see Dr. Thomas at Summa. She was a urogynecologist. She told me exactly what the problem was. I had the beginnings of prolapse, so the pain was getting so bad I could barely stand up and sit down and then I started to bleed. Dr. Thomas recommended a total hysterectomy and pelvic floor repair. Surgery was very successful beyond my wildest dreams. Dr. Thomas and her team treated me so well. It was just like I was their mother and the home care that I received afterwards was just phenomenal. Now I'm able to do the things I love, spend time with my grandkids. I even walk my dog. Life is good.

Mariah Hunt

Mother finds empowerment and support through Centering Parenting Program


Mariah: My name is Mariah Hunt. I am coming to my weekly Centering Parenting class. We come every other Wednesday. I'm here with my son Machiavelli who is six months, and my daughter Mckayla who is three.

Ericka: We developed our Centering Parenting Program to help the mothers throughout the first year of their babies' lives, to make sure that they make it to their first birthday healthy and happy. We talk about everything from nursing, to how to baby proof a house. We do healthy cooking classes for mom and baby.

Mariah: You leave knowing that you know enough as a mother, which is very important because we don't get told that a lot as a mom. I feel like I am a better mom because of the Centering Program. It's really empowering, and I've never experienced anything like it before. It's a true sisterhood.

Ericka: With the assistance that we offer and the love and care that we give, we are able to help them understand that giving birth and giving life is an amazing thing.

Mariah: I love it. I love it. I have not missed a class since I've been here.


Hayley Stumbo

Pelvic Health Patient

Encourages other women with endometriosis not to give up.


Hayley: I suffered with endometriosis and chronic pelvic and abdominal pain for years, it disrupted every aspect of my life. I was unable to eat, drink, walk, work.

My primary OB-GYN sent me to the specialists at Summa Health. That's where I met Dr. Cesta in pelvic health and Dr. Welch in colorectal surgery. They recommended surgery to remove the areas that endometriosis had affected my organs. And in my particular case, a hysterectomy. This was the first team of doctors that I had seen that made me feel so validated and actually had an answer. Dr. Cesta and Dr. Welch, the quality of their care is astounding.

I wake up now with no pain. I went from having no hope to I can do anything. I can live my life. And my advice to women dealing with this would be do not give up. There is definitely hope.


Nesrene Clossman

Mother of four appreciates Summa's new birthing center


Nesrene: I knew as soon as I found out I was expecting that I would also be having this baby through the midwives at Summa.

So when I heard Summa was opening a new patient tower, I was hoping that my baby would wait. And she hung on three days late, past my due date, so I could deliver in the new labor and delivery unit.

We have a really large family and the new unit is very expansive. And my husband was able to be there throughout the entire labor and delivery process, and that just really speaks volumes to how Summa values the family-centered care.

One of the labor and delivery nurses knitted a hat for me to give to Layla. Everyone there just made it a welcoming experience to have my baby there.

We always planned on having three kids, and we had four, so she's kind of our bonus baby that we got to have a brand new baby in the brand new hospital.

So, "you're so special Layla, huh?"


Barb Bungard

Uterine Cancer Patient and MyChart User

Can’t imagine cancer journey without MyChart


Barb: When I first got my diagnosis of uterine cancer at Summa, one of the very first questions that I asked was, do you have MyChart, do you use MyChart? And that is crucial for me, because that's how I like to engage. To be able to know about your lab work, and to be able to ask questions related to your medications, or potential symptoms. It is so important to not have to depend upon a phone call, and the doctor's office and their availability.

Dr. Laskey and her team, Courtney and Eileen at the Cooper Cancer Pavilion have been awesome. They make me feel very comfortable that I can utilize MyChart any time for any reason.

So I never anticipated going down this cancer journey, but I cannot imagine not having MyChart available for me.


New mom filled with joy


I went into labor on my due date. We needed the help of a doctor near the end, and Dr. Johnson came in at the very end and helped us and I got this beautiful baby Francis out of it.

And the nurses up there, I mean truly they are angels. Julie, one of the nurses from Maternity, called in the middle of the night because she was worried about my daughter. Someone I didn't even know 72 hours ago was laying awake worrying about my kid. They were out of this world fabulous. I kept on thinking where does Summa put their grumpy employees because I haven't seen a single one of them. They are all just so nice. The people who brought me my food every day were so nice.

We just wanted to do the best we could with Francis. We can't wait to get back to the Maternity ward. Knock on wood. Once you have one you think oh this little girl needs a sibling.


Debra Racey

Endometrial cancer survivor is grateful for her care team


Debra: I was experiencing some very heavy vaginal bleeding, so I did some research, and I found Dr. Robin Laskey here at Summa. You just get this overwhelming feeling of this person really, really cares. And I was constantly thanking my lucky stars that I had found her.

She told me that I did have endometrial cancer. It's like your whole world really does fall apart.

Dr. Laskey actually did robotic surgery on me, a total hysterectomy.

There are so many support services here at Cooper Cancer Center, and key amongst them was Dr. Jessica Moeller, who is a psychologist. She was a godsend to me.

If it weren't for those Summa doctors, I wouldn't be here today. I owe them my life. I literally have to pinch myself daily cause I am a cancer survivor. And I have beautiful hair again.


Olivia Kurcsak

Mother of five finds comfort in maternity services


Olivia: My husband and I had four children, and then we found out we were expecting our fifth, it was an easy decision for us to head back to the Summa Maternity Program where we had delivered the other four.

Summa's new hospital was beautiful. Everything was so nice and new and it was just a beautiful space. They had everything that you would need to be comfortable with your birth. Their new laboring tubs are beautiful huge tubs if you want that for comfort in your labor.

My husband was able to be with me through the whole process. It was homey and comfortable for us. The postpartum area there was plenty of room for him to spend that time with me as well after the birth.

My midwife Bobbi was so helpful with my birth of Hazel. She was just very caring and compassionate and made sure I had a safe and comfortable delivery as I brought Hazel into the world. Hazel makes baby 5 for our family, and we keep going back to Summa so they must be doing something right.


Valerie Esmont

No longer suffering in silence from pelvic pain


Valerie: After suffering for years with pelvic pain, I finally came to the care of Summa Health. Pelvic pain isn't easy to talk about. It's such a rough road and a lonely pain. Luckily Summa Health has the doctors and the physical therapy services that have truly saved my life.

My physical therapist, Amy, is one of the few that specialize in pelvic pain across the country. It's just a joy to go see Amy, and my quality of life has improved to a degree to a level I didn't think was possible.

Now I have two beautiful daughters that I never thought I could have, and they're just, oh my gosh, they just light up my life. I can't think of life without them.

My message for anyone suffering with pelvic pain is that you don't have to suffer in silence, and I'm living proof of that.


Sarah Fister

Midwifery delivers an amazing experience to a beautiful family


Sarah: When I found out I was pregnant with my first child, we heard about Summa's midwifery program, and we met the midwives, and we loved them. And we have delivered four healthy babies through them. Yes. I love the midwifery program.

Summa's midwife program included my whole family. My husband was very involved. My kids got to be involved. Because my husband was my coach too, so Bobbi helped teach him how to love me through having a baby.

Bobbi was right there with me through every pregnancy. She's very gifted at knowing how to deliver babies, and she's very respectful and kind and gentle.

One of my favorite parts about the midwife program is that they allow you to listen to your body. So you are not just laying in a bed delivering a baby, but I actually was able to deliver one of my daughters standing up. And this little man was the most beautiful delivery out of all four of my kids. I was very peaceful, it was very calm... I loved it.

Having four little children is so fulfulling. It's crazy, it's chaos, but it's so much fun. It is really a blast.


Shelby Smith

Overcame addiction with help from Summa's Centering Pregnancy Program


Shelby: I was struggling with opioid addiction when I found out that I was pregnant. And I found out about Summa's Centering Pregnancy Program. Centering is a spot for pregnant women who are struggling with addiction. So we all had something in common. It was like a sisterhood. We all went through this together. Having a baby inside you and struggling with addiction, it's so hard. Addiction can be a very selfish disease. The Centering Pregnancy Program taught me that it's not about me any more. It's about my child.

Dr. Roulette made it his priority to care about not only me but my unborn child. If I was to see him today, I would give him a big old hug. Yeah, I love Dr. Roulette.

Through Summa's Centering Pregnancy Program, I found me again. I learned to become an amazing mother. That program saved my life.

Kelsy was born October 21st of 2016. She's my everything. Everything I live for.


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