Even though most members of the McKellar Nurses Alumnae Association are retired, they still work hard to improve health care in Northwestern Ontario. This past summer, the Alumnae Association donated $2,500 towards the purchase of the new PET/CT scanner.
“We discussed the need and decided that diagnostic imaging was an important area of health care,” said Heather Kibzey, an Alumnae member. All the money raised comes directly from the members themselves. “Our group recognizes the need for donations towards new hospital equipment.”
Sandra Wilson, a manager in the Diagnostic Imaging program, said that our current PET/CT scanner is older and needs to be replaced soon before it breaks down.
“Care close to home is so important, and many more care plans are depending on PET/CT to help make treatment decisions,” Wilson said. “We need a faster and more reliable state-of-the-art unit to enable us to provide the patients of Northwestern Ontario with the exact same care that they would receive anywhere else.”
The Alumnae Association launched in 1923 to provide “unity and good will” among graduates of the McKellar General Hospital School of Nursing. It played a vital role supporting nurses, purchasing equipment, setting up scholarships, and pursuing other activities to help patients and the community. Alumnae members still play an active role at the Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre, donating funds and volunteering their time to improve local health care.
“It’s ongoing,” Kibzey said. “Many of our members still help at the Hospital as patient-family advisors (PFAs) or other types of volunteers.”