The McBride Hospital Auxiliary has donated money to the local hospital to purchase the new stretcher (shown above) to replace the one that has been in use for almost 40 years. /SUBMITTED

By Andrea Arnold

Thanks to their fundraising efforts, the McBride and District Hospital Auxiliary has purchased a new stretcher for the McBride and District Hospital. The stretcher that has been in use since the mid-80s has been retired. The stretcher has been repaired over the years but it has reached an age and condition that limits available replacement parts, for instance, the hydraulic system could no longer lift or lower patients.

The new bed can be used in the x-ray room preventing the need to move patients from one bed to another. This eliminates unnecessary discomfort and risk for the patient.

It also has built-in weight and measuring options.

The Auxiliary has two other large purchases pending for the funds raised in 2021. They are purchasing thermopacks for the ambulances and a mattress for a bariatric bed, an extra heavy-duty and wide bed with a higher weight capacity than standard models, at the hospital.

The Christmas fundraising season is getting started for the Hospital Auxiliary. The annual Christmas Hamper tickets are available for sale all over town and will be drawn on Dec. 4th. The Angel Tree and Community Christmas Card purchases are coming soon.

Super Soup orders can be placed through facebook or at McKale Guest House Nov. 5-19th.

The soup is provided from “Sister Soup factory” out of PG. The dry ingredients are assembled in a bag and instructions provided for easy meal prep.

This is the first year the soup fundraiser has been a part of the Auxiliary year. With limitations and restrictions they have had to be creative and come up with new ways of raising money, and are always looking for viable and fun fundraising options.

“We have received direct donations from people in memory of loved ones that have passed,” said Auxiliary President Carol Hammar. “These types of donations have decreased, due likely to the lack of funeral gatherings.”

The small, determined group keep costs down by donating not just time, but supplies for some of their saleable items.
They have also turned to grants to help them continue their service to the community.

“We are waiting to hear back from Four Rivers Co-op regarding a grant for a cast cutter and vacuum,” said Hammar.

“This is a more efficient cutter and the vacuum would prevent both patient and medical personnel from the dust created when a cast is cut off.”

Those wanting to support their efforts can head to the McKale Guest House and purchase rice bag heat packs or Rhu-Barb-B-Q sauce, whose proceeds will go to the auxiliary.

Members will be at the Valemount Craft Fair on Saturday November 20, 2021 with these items available for purchase as well as the seasonal Christmas items.