Community Steps Up During Covid-19

Thanks to the generosity of the community, the KGH Foundation has been able to fund the acquisition of several new pieces of equipment to support front-line health care staff in the delivery of acute care during the pandemic.

In early April, just a few weeks after COVID-19’s arrival the interior, the foundation established the KGH COVID-19 Response Fund to support the emerging, unanticipated needs of doctors, nurses and staff at Kelowna General Hospital during the crisis, and appealed for the communities help.

Answering the call, the community has rallied around their local hospital. In just 6 months, over $510,000 has been donated in support of the KGH’s greatest needs during COVID-19.

“The generosity of donors has allowed us to be responsive and nimble, which is really critical during this time,” says Doug Rankmore, CEO of the KGH Foundation. “The funding helps ensure our doctors, nurses and staff has the resources and equipment they need to deliver the highest quality care to all KGH patients.”

Some of these acquisitions include equipment to support some of KGH’s smallest patients. An additional, dedicated pediatric ventilator for the KGH neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) now reduces the need for existing equipment to be moved and shared between babies.  Special accessories for ventilators in the KGH Emergency Department allow this vital equipment to now support the unique needs of babies and young children in urgent, respiratory distress.

In addition, doctors and nurses treating patients presenting with acute respiratory symptoms, including those with COVID-19, will also have access to a new blood gas analyzer.  This tool allows for rapid assessment of the amount of oxygen and carbon dioxide in the blood, which is critical to the care of these patients.

“It is one thing to be seen,” says Jaymi Chernoff Executive Director, referencing the foundations recent ‘We See You’ appeal to support local hospital staff.  “But what we as frontline health care workers truly want is to feel heard. When donors fund equipment and care items that hospital staff has identified as opportunities to provide better patient care – that is what support looks like for us.  We are incredibly grateful to our community for their generosity- for not only seeing us, but for hearing us too.”