Thank You to Almonte General Hospital Supporters

In December, I wrote to many of you sharing my personal story of how important our Hospital and Manor are to my family and me.

Health care is something that we can never take for granted.  That’s why I’ve been committed to serving both on the Hospital board of directors and now on the Foundation board.  Ensuring that the amazing doctors and staff in Almonte have the best equipment with which to care for our patients and residents is something that we can all help ensure.

No matter how big or small, whether you give once a year, monthly donations or participate in one of our many events, I want to thank you on behalf of my board colleagues and the staff of the Almonte General Hospital Fairview Manor Foundation.  Your support is having a major impact on patient and resident care.

It would appear that our seasonal appeal letter raised close to $75,000.  This brings our total towards the new diagnostic imaging equipment to approximately $1.4 million.  We still have a ways to go to reach our goal of $4 million, but please know that your recent donations are much appreciated.

Best wishes for a healthly & happy 2018
Betty Preston
AGH-FVM Foundation Board Member

My Story

I moved to Mississippi Mills almost 30 years ago with my husband Ernie. Together, we watched our community grow and took comfort seeing the Almonte General Hospital expanding to meet our changing health-care needs. As a pharmacist here in Almonte, I became a part of many people’s health-care stories…maybe even yours.

Ernie and I have used the Hospital for everything from physio to pancreatitis, and we’ve always received the very best of care.  In fact, I’ve had so many joint replacements at the big hospitals in Ottawa that my daughters call me Robo-Mom.  I always appreciate coming home to our hospital afterwards.  Thanks to the care I’ve received at AGH, I’m still an active volunteer in the Hospital Pharmacy, have served on the Hospital board for nine years, and am now a member of the Foundation Board of Directors.

Earlier this year, the Hospital urgently needed to replace both the stationary and portable X-ray machines and acquire two new digital ultrasound machines.  The X-ray suite also had to be renovated to meet the new radiation safety codes. These purchases were urgent because the existing X-ray and ultrasound machines were 9 – 10 years old and the manufacturers no longer sold replacement parts.

For someone like me (who has had more X-rays and ultrasounds than I can count), these new diagnostic tools are really good news!  I used to cart a big envelope of X-ray film to my specialist appointments.  Now, the technologist gives me a disk or transmits my pictures right to my doctors’ office.  My specialist is pleased because, like a digital camera, the quality of digital X-rays and ultrasounds is much clearer. He can now get a really good look at what’s going on and determine the best course of treatment for me.  Plus, I’m now exposed to 70% less radiation.

With 41% of all emergency room visits requiring some sort of diagnostic tests, I’ll bet you or someone you love may have already benefited from this new equipment too.

The Hospital also wants to install a CT scanner.  It would allow doctors to have a closer look at bones, internal organs or even blood vessels.  I can tell you that being transported to and from another hospital for a CT scan can be very uncomfortable and no fun at all.  If Ernie or I have a stroke, heart attack or a serious accident, I want a CT scanner right here so as not to spend precious time going to Ottawa or Smiths Falls.  Don’t you?

The new diagnostic machines (X-rays, ultrasound, CT scanner) will cost $4 million.  Yes, it’s a lot of money but you and I need this equipment. We need to know that if our child, grandchild, spouse or parent is brought to the Hospital, they’ll have access to the tests doctors need to provide a fast, accurate diagnosis.

Did you know that the provincial government does not provide funding for replacement or new equipment? All hospital equipment is purchased with donated dollars. We can feel really proud of having such great care at AGH and Fairview Manor because our community is working together to help the Hospital and Manor get the equipment the staff need to look after us.

This is why the Almonte General Hospital-Fairview Manor Foundation (AGH-FVM) launched the “Put Yourself in the Picture” campaign last spring, and has already raised $1.3 million.

Ernie and I have supported the Hospital through the AGH-FVM Foundation for years.  This year, we increased our support to help purchase the new diagnostic machines (X-ray and ultrasound).  Honestly, we are proud to know that our contribution is helping our family, neighbours and friends and may even save a life one day.

Please join us by making as meaningful a donation or pledge as you can to support the “Put Yourself in the Picture” campaign this Christmas.  Take a few moments right now to send in your gift and “put yourself in the picture.” You can even make monthly contributions if that’s easier for you.   Let’s all do what we can to ensure that our own, or someone else’s health-care story will be a better one.

Merry Christmas and a Happy & Healthy 2018,
Betty Preston