Hospital Foundation marks a successful year

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Added: Wed, 06/19/2019 - 1:25pm
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Jamie Cameron

SHAWVILLE – The Pontiac Community Hospital Foundation held its annual general meeting, June 3 at the hospital. Members looked back on a year when a major project, the Pontiac Dialysis Unit, was finally realized after over a
decade of fundraising. The Foundation ended last year with $364,676 in their
general fund. Donations to the Foundation totaled $126,992 for the 2019 fiscal year and $112,531 in 2018.
Richard Grimard, Foundation President, explained that the Dialysis Unit opened December 10, 2018 and accepted its first patient two days later. “Everyone worked hard to see this happen, but most of the thanks should go to the community. They are the ones still supporting the project,” he said.
The Dialysis Unit was identified as a priority by the Foundation twelve years ago, as locally available treatment would save travel time for patients and their families, who had to make the return trip to Gatineau many times a week, sometimes for the entire day. About $660,000 was paid to CISSSO in January 2019 for the Unit, which was raised through donations and a wide variety of fundraising events. According to Foundation member Dr. Thomas O’Neill, Grimard and Donald Lavallée were key players in keeping the fundraising campaign going.
Gail Ryan, Centre intégré de santé et de services sociaux de l'Outaouais (CISSSO) representative, said the Unit filled up very quickly.
“An important element to highlight is the high patient and family satisfaction; since it’s close to home people don’t have to travel,” she added, noting that although the Foundation has accomplished many projects over the years, she feels the Dialysis Unit is extra special because it keeps patients close to home where they are most comfortable.
The Foundation is currently working on a website which will allow residents to review the Foundation’s expenses, current and future projects, as well as donate to
specific projects. “Every penny raised remains at this institution,” stressed Grimard.
During the election for three seats, Albert Armstrong was elected to seat 6, Allan Dean to seat 10 and Leanne Gray to seat 12.