Hospital auxiliary keeps surprising

The St. Joseph’s Healthcare Auxiliary has once again surprised the St. Joseph’s Hospital with a big donation going towards the hospital’s long-term care facility.

Members of the auxiliary presented a cheque for $70,000 to the hospital on Wednesday during the auxiliary’s annual Christmas tea and bake sale. They had also given $40,000 towards updating the beds earlier this year.

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“It just keeps getting bigger and better all the time. Just when I think I’ve seen the height of generosity of the ladies’ auxiliary, here it comes. They just raise the bar each and every time,” said hospital CEO Greg Hoffort.

He added that they are really thrilled about the donation that helps to cover the costs of new, modern beds the hospital purchased for the long-term care. The previous ones were 30 years old. But the donation allowed the hospital to go a bit further than just a simple replacement.

“This generosity allowed us to not only replace these beds but to replace these beds with beds that are so technologically advanced in terms of the comfort of the mattress and the different technology they built, specifically for seniors and care in these beds,” said Hoffort.

The new beds also have built-in alarms, informing the staff if the patient is out of bed when they are not supposed to be, or fell out of the bed. They also have an ability to weigh patients and also can lift legs and recline patients up at the same time, thus reducing bed sores. 

“It is remarkable, it has made a difference for our financial issues at St. Joseph’s Hospital, because funding dollars are very tough and almost impossible for healthcare and equipment these days, but more importantly it made a difference for the lives of 38 people who use these beds and will be using for the next 30 years,” said Hoffort.

The hospital’s emergency room manager Tara Daoust noted that it took patients about a week to adjust, but then many of them said that they haven’t had such a good sleep for a long time. 

The hospital and the auxiliary also thanked the United Way Estevan for their contributions for the last 43 years.

“We always say that the money stays in Estevan, and this is a prime example,” said United Way Estevan board member Mark Pettitt, who is also the director of support services at the hospital. 

The Christmas tea and bake sale also turned out to be a big success with a lot of people attending to either enjoy the tea and delicious homemade carrot cake, or to pick up some baking made with love by auxiliary members.

“Membership in the auxiliary means having a direct link between the hospital and the public,” said auxiliary president Marlene Shurygalo. “Our greatest thanks to the community of Estevan and surrounding areas for your generous contributions whether it is baking, honorariums, crocheting, knitting, making purchases at our gift shop, giving donations, selling and buying tickets and attending our tea and bake sales. Thank you so much.”


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