Skip links and keyboard navigation

Injured schoolboy who learnt to walk again says he will never forget PAH staff

11 October 2018

This week, 18-year-old Ollie Bierhoff walked out of his last scheduled outpatient appointment at Princess Alexandra Hospital (PAH) only four months after being paralysed from the neck down during high school rugby training.

Ollie said learning to walk again was the toughest thing he has ever had to do.

"I treated it like a training session, I knew I had to keep pushing at it every single day,” he said.

"I wanted to walk in the first month and I ended up walking in six days.

“Being fit and healthy enough to leave hospital in 40 days was great.

“And now being told I don’t have to come back for another outpatient appointment for at least a whole year, well, that’s just so amazing.”   

Ollie said he would always remember the PAH staff who cared for him.

“My parents and I will never forget all the nurses, doctors, physiotherapists and people who got me to this point,” he said.

“I was in intensive care, then orthopaedics, and then in spinal injuries. Everyone was just so great.

“I’m really, really thankful. I don’t think I’ll ever be able to say just how much everyone has meant to me.”

Ollie said he looked forward to driving again and planned to stay fit and healthy, but would avoid any contact sports.

“I was just so lucky, I won’t be tempting fate again,” he said.

“After everything my families gone through, I’ve gone through, and all the effort from my health team to get me up and walking again. Well I just don’t take it for granted.” 

Last updated 11 October 2018
Last reviewed 11 October 2018

Other news

PAH dishes out greener alternative to plastic

PAH dishes out greener alternative to plastic

In a major win for the environment, a whopping 650,000 plastic kidney dishes used annually at Princess Alexandra Hospital will be replaced by a biodegradable alternative made from sugarcane fibre.

Logan plays its part in flood relief

Nursing reinforcements welcomed in Townsville

While the resilience of thousands of Townsville residents continues to inspire the nation, 10 individual nurses from Metro South Health have been welcomed as heroes at the local Hospital.