Last week the Kootenay Lake Hospital Foundation gathered its most loyal supporters at the Hume Hotel for a special night. The annual Caring Companies Dinner included a diverse mix of business people and local organizations. It provided a perfect glimpse into why the Foundation is such a success.
Health care in British Columbia has changed significantly over the years. Governments argue the cost of the system has become unaffordable. In an attempt to make it sustainable for future generations, our leaders say the bottom line can’t be ignored and cash isn’t endless. With that shift has come plenty of concern from industry watchers who keep a close eye on service levels.
In an age when government is ignoring communities with their hands out, it’s organizations like the Kootenay Lake Hospital Foundation that ensure we have the upper hand when it comes to local health care.
The CT scanner was an epic effort that saw our community raise more than a million dollars. But the Foundation’s great work prior and post CT scanner is just as impressive.
Last year’s two major campaigns — the Breath of Life and Light Up the Hospital — raised $120,000. The equipment purchased went towards enhancing surgical services which are slowly creeping their way back into the Nelson facility. Without the Foundation, it’s very likely the province would ignore the equipment requests the community donations were able to satisfy.
From big car dealerships to small accounting firms, there are many local businesses that form a base of support. Area service clubs and ladies auxiliaries are always generous. Even local government gets into the mix.
It all adds up to a better hospital. And there is a great deal of pride that goes into doing it ourselves and setting our own agenda for the local hospital.
Though Kootenay Lake Hospital is often a place of great pain and suffering, Foundation chairperson Pat Dooley said it best at last week’s dinner: “It’s an awesome place.”