A little more than half a million dollars worth of equipment is needed to help with COVID-19 care at Surrey Memorial Hospital.
Surrey Hospital Foundation president and CEO Jane Adams said the foundation has been waiting for the hospital to put together its list of what equipment is needed to help care for patients with COVID-19.
“They were doing an inventory of everything they had and then looking at what equipment they needed that would be paid by the province or the federal government, which some of the equipment is because we’re a major COVID site. But there was some equipment that was not covered as part of that and so I now have that list,” she said.
That list, she said, adds up to $568,200 and the hospital foundation will be working with the community to raise the funds.
Fortunately, the hospital foundation started its COVID-19 Response Fund back in March and has since raised about $250,000, Adams said.
The fund is to help purchase equipment for COVID-19 care as well as health and wellness initiatives for frontline workers.
Adams said the foundation will first apply the funds raised to the “most urgently” needed equipment and “then work through the list.”
The equipment needed is three ultrasounds, two vein finders, six stretcher chairs and two defibrillators – one of which will be bought by Surrey businessman Bob Hans and his family.
Back in September of 2019, Hans and his family donated $125,000 to the hospital children’s centre fundraising campaign.
“He reached out around Vaisakhi and he said in the spirit of Vaisakhi, which is giving back and community, he wanted to give again and he wanted to help the COVID (fight),” Adams said.
The defibrillators, she said are to help when transferring patients from ICU to another area “because, of course, they’re very sick and they can crash, so we need the ability to get the heart going again.”
As for the equipment, Adams said the ultrasounds are needed for the ICU for healthcare workers to “safely place lines in critically ill COVID patients and assess their cardiac status as well as their lung status.”
The vein finders are for the emergency department and are $8,000 each, “which are, in terms of equipment, are modestly priced, I guess,” Adams said.
“They help meet the demands of COVID-19 pending patients admitted in the ER,” she said. “The vein finders are needed in the COVID zone of our ER to support patients who might be in septic shock, so their veins are very, very difficult to find and so if they need to get liquids or medication immediately into the veinous system, these vein finders are like gold because they magnify the vein, they help the care team who are working in very urgent, emergent situations find the vein and get in.”
Adams said the stretcher chairs will allow for more capacity on site in the emergency department, “in the event we need more places to have patients, so we can start the treatment.”
Meantime, the COVID-19 fund is also being used for the hospital’s meal program to help feed the healthcare workers.
She said the foundation is expecting to provide around 40,000 meals this month.
As for the COVID-19 patients in the hospital’s critical care tower, all of their TVs have been turned on so they have something to watch.
“We’ve had to turn the WiFi off for public use in the tower in order to get the bandwidth for people working remotely.”
The foundation is also working with Telus to provide upwards of 30 iPads for patients to be able to Zoom or FaceTime family while they’re in hospital.
“Often, people are very, very sick and sometimes there may not be other visits, or even if they are going to recover, they’re not able to have visitors and loved ones with them, so there’s an opportunity with the help of clinical staff to visit and see their loved ones.”
To donate to the COVID-19 relief fund, visit surreyhospitalfoundation.com/covid19.
Meantime at Peace Arch Hospital, the hospital foundation in “desperate need” of about 50 iPads, according to Stephanie Beck, executive director.
For many of the long-term care patients at the PAH Foundation Lodge and the Dr. Al Hogg Pavilion, the foundation is in need of the iPads so the patients can communicate with loved ones during the pandemic.
“As a community, we’re all in this together and I am so grateful for our donors who continue to rally around our front line heroes to provide them with ongoing nourishment during these challenging times,” said Beck. “We are also in desperate need of iPads for our most frail and vulnerable long-term care patients so they can communicate with their loved ones while visitation is restricted indefinitely.”
To donate to the Peace Arch Hospital Foundation, visit pahfoundation.ca.