CT Scan fundraiser launch event raises over $350,000

A look at the current CT Scanner at DRHC. Photos by Michael Christianson.

Dryden Rotary members were on the CKDR morning show to donate money from the Dryden Rotary Radio Bingo.

By Michael Christianson

The Dryden Regional Health Centre kicked off one of their most ambitious fundraising campaigns in recent history with the goal of raising $1.25 million for a new Computed Tomography (CT) Scan Unit.

On Monday morning the hospital cafeteria was buzzing with activity as CKDR’s morning show was broadcasting live to kick off the campaign and to take donations.

Before an hour had gone by $100,000 had already been donated to the CT Fundraiser.

Large donations in the first hour included $30,000 donated from the Rotary Club, $25,000 donated by Bryan Tardiff and Dryden GM Ice Dogs president Mike Svienson was on hand to donate $10,000 on behalf of the organization.

Fundraising and recruitment coordinator at DRHC Chuck Schmitt recalled the campaign in 2008 to originally get the CT scanner and he said the generosity from the region is not surprising now; it just goes to show the spirit of giving in the area.

“It’s a piece of equipment that if not you someone you know is going to access and benefit using the CT Scan. It supports our general surgery program, internal medicine, emergency medicine, supports the oncology department,” said Schmitt. “It’s a huge thing for stroke, we used to have to send people out; if you were presented with stroke symptoms in Dryden you would have to be referred to another center for a CT and there’s a window of time you can be administered certain drugs that will help reverse some of the effects, so we just have to have this piece of equipment here it’s part of the framework now.”

Chair of the Dryden Regional Health Services Foundation Kelly Sobering said this fundraising project is a major undertaking. She said the hope is to raise the $1.25 million over a three year period and to educate the public more about the equipment.

Vice President of Patient Care Services and Chief Nursing Executive Doreen Armstrong-Ross said that lots has been bought by the community over the years through fundraising and said the CT scan is a very important tool in the DHRC toolbox.

“With strokes in particular there’s what we call a door to needle time so you want to get the medication that they need to lessen the effects of the stroke in a certain period of time and the CT scan allows us to do that right here in Dryden,” said Armstrong-Ross. “We did 2,000 scans here last year, so if you think that is 2,000 less people who have to go out of town for a CT scan and that’s 2,000 times a diagnosis is made earlier and treatment is started sooner so it’s a very important piece of equipment for a hospital to have.”

By lunch time Monday more than $350,000 had been raised.

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