Foundation notes: Goodwill keeps rolling in

Phase 2 of hospital upgrades rolling in

John Moorhouse is development and communications officer for the South Okanagan Similkameen Medical Foundation. Western News graphic

It’s hard to believe Penticton Regional Hospital’s new David E. Kampe Tower has already been open for more than five months. We’ve received an incredible number of positive comments about how the tower turned out. Now the construction focus has shifted onto Phase 2 of the PRH expansion.

A major upgrade to the Emergency Department (ED) is the most significant aspect of Phase 2 as it takes over space vacated by nearby departments that moved into the tower. This will see a dramatic increase in the size of Emergency and its ability to improve patient and staff flows. The renovation will take place in multiple phases, but the ED will definitely remain open for the duration of the project, set for completion by the fall of 2021.

•••

The SOS Medical Foundation is currently raising $280,000 for South Okanagan General Hospital in Oliver – part of a $1.25-million upgrade to the Emergency Dept. The SOGH project has already gained generous support from the Oliver branch of the Royal Canadian Legion, the Kiwanis Club of Oliver, and the Oliver Aktion Club. The donated funds will be used for some features not included in the original plans set out by the government such as a nurses’ work station, permanent medical gas hookups in the triage area, and an exterior canopy over the new ER entrance for walk-in patients. Construction should be completed by the end of December.

•••

It was a real treat to be invited to the 20th-anniversary celebration of the Survivorship dragon boat team on Sept. 28. Not only has this group of South Okanagan breast cancer survivors supported each other, but they’ve also been huge supporters of breast cancer awareness and treatment.

Survivorship made a final donation to fulfill their $30,000 pledge to our PRH campaign.

Their boat “Survivorship Too” has also been set up in the lobby of the Penticton Lakeside Resort for October – Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

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A sincere Thank You to the ladies involved in the 23rd annual Peach City Tees Up for Cancer golf tournament. This year’s Tees Up tourney in August generated an incredible $50,000 towards a new Digital Mammography machine at PRH. Last year, more than 7,300 mammograms were completed at the hospital and the former mammography machine was reaching the end of its lifespan.

Tees Up has now raised over $660,000 since 1997 – mainly for equipment required for cancer treatment and detection.

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Kudos as well to the Summerland Yacht Club for hosting the fifth annual Great Ogopogo Bathtub Race off Powell Beach in Trout Creek. The Aug. 17 event raised another $23,500 which brings the total donation since 2015 to an incredible $124,500. The entire amount has gone to the Medical Foundation’s PRH Tower campaign.

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Finally, one more word of thanks to Gary Gierlich and other volunteers from the Penticton Pickleball Club which hosted a fun tourney at the Seniors Drop-In Centre on South Main Street. The event, which involved players from several PRH departments and emergency first responders, raised about $9,000 which will split between the PRH cardiology department and the Pickleball Club’s efforts to develop four more pickleball courts in the city.

Thanks to the tournament sponsors and everyone else involved.

John Moorhouse is the development and communications officer for the South Okanagan Similkameen Medical Foundation. For information on donating, please call or visit our website. 250-492-9027 sosmedicalfoundation.com

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