hdhEnews issue: December 20, 2016

Inside this issue:
Spirit of Hotel Dieu Hospital guides us home during year of change
Pediatric walk-in clinic open during holiday season
Search is on for inaugural Board of Directors for new hospital corporation
And…the search is on for a new name, too! Our survey wraps up Dec. 23.
Volunteers pull the gift of excellent health care from their Santa sack
The most magical gift:  3.5 hours of your time in support of patient care

Christmas TreeSpirit of Hotel Dieu Hospital guides us home during year of change

We wrapped up a year of change at Hotel Dieu Hospital faced with a decision about our Christmas tree. 

For decades our lobby has been transformed during the Advent season, with a large Christmas tree and manger taking up central spots.  Earlier this year we reconfigured the lobby, adding a huge new revolving door to enable people to enter more safely and easily, and relocating the Information Desk to create a clearer path for people and wheelchairs. 

Suddenly, the usual space for the Christmas tree and manger didn’t work and, at first, we were stumped about where they could go.  But then we did what we always do at Hotel Dieu:  we made a better space.  Now the tree and manger are nestled together in a new spot close to our revolving door, highly visible to everyone coming up our main driveway, through our doors or resting and waiting in our lobby.  The tree is the first thing you see when you enter the hospital and the last thing you see when you leave.  And, for the first time, we have Christmas carols playing around the tree—a quiet reflection of the season.

We made many big decisions this year at Hotel Dieu, including expanding services for patients living with chronic pain, launching a new weight-loss surgery program and introducing breast reconstruction surgery.  Biggest of all was the historic choice to join with Kingston General Hospital to create a new academic health sciences centre.  After a 20-year history of sharing programs, services and people, and with many patients already receiving care at both hospitals, it was the next logical step to building a stronger health system for our community.

The spirit behind every decision—including the seemingly smaller ones such as re-locating our Christmas tree—is always the same:  doing what is best for patients and families and honouring our mission as a Catholic health care organization.  That spirit is the constant amidst change. We know that it will always guide us home.

May you enjoy a peaceful holiday and carry that peace with you into the coming year.

young boy with doctorPediatric walk-in clinic open during holiday season

Our specialized outpatient clinics are closed Dec. 26 to Jan. 2 inclusive (with the exception of a few specially book clinics).  Children and youth who require urgent care can visit our Pediatric Urgent Care (walk-in) Clinic, open 10 am to 4 pm, Dec. 27, 28, 29, 30.  Our general Urgent Care Centre remains open 8 am to 8 pm, daily.  If you are in need of serious medical attention, call 911 or go to your nearest emergency department.  

Search is on for inaugural Board of Directors for new hospital corporation

If you want to make a difference in how health care is delivered in southeastern Ontario, then Hotel Dieu Hospital and Kingston General Hospital might have a new position for you.  Slated to come together as a single health sciences centre by April 1, 2017, the two organizations are now accepting applications from interested individuals to sit on the inaugural Board of Directors of the new integrated entity. Members of the new Board will have an opportunity to shape the strategy for the health sciences centre and determine how best to deliver acute-complex, specialty and ambulatory care for our region. The deadline for applications is Jan. 4, 2017. Learn more about the application process here.

And...the search is on for a new name, too!  Our survey wraps up Dec. 23.

As we work to come together as one organization on two sites, Hotel Dieu Hospital and Kingston General Hospital are looking for the perfect name for their new corporation. The name will act as an “umbrella brand” for both of the hospital sites, which will each keep their existing hospital names. We welcome your thoughts, suggestions and ideas on what the name of our new integrated hospital corporation could be.  Click here to complete a survey that lets you review a list of proposed names, select your top three choices and suggest additional options. Up and running for several weeks now, our survey wraps up Friday. Dec. 23, 2016.

Volunteers pull the gift of excellent health care from their Santa sackDrs. Jones and Bona accepting cheque from Volunteers

True to tradition, hospital volunteers handed out lots of seasonal goodies at their annual Christmas meeting Dec. 19, announcing close to $35,000 in contributions towards excellent patient care Hospital including one especially poignant gift.

At the December Christmas gathering, the Volunteers celebrated the season by pledging $10,000 to the hospital’s Low Vision Rehabilitation Clinic, which helps individuals cope with visual impairment and achieve a sense of accomplishment as they regain some level of independence that eye disease may have taken away.  The volunteers also contributed $7500 to the Ear, Nose and Throat Department, an amount that will be matched by the Larry Gibson Estate as ENT works toward expanding its footprint and physically relocating to the main hospital building.

The KidsInclusive Centre for Child & Youth Development also received $10,000 to help with the financial cost of equipment for kids with special needs.  Last year, for example, the fund provided a financial boost to families who needed to purchase writing aids and assistive devices. In addition, the Volunteers presented the hospital’s Child Life program with $3500 to help continue its vital, day-to-day work of empowering young patients who are facing or living with health problems.

In addition, the Children’s Outpatient Centre and Spiritual Health Department benefited from this year’s Volunteer largesse, receiving $500 and $1000 respectively.  However, a final donation of $2000 to the cardiac clinics was especially poignant for the volunteers because it honoured Mary Maclean, a longtime friend and colleague who died suddenly in November 2016.

“We really wanted to remember Mary in a special way,” says Volunteers Services President Carol Hazell.  “She was so committed to this hospital and the patients that we’re sure she would love to be supporting them through this memorial donation.  It’s a great honour to present it to the hospital in Mary’s memory.”

Photo:  Top:  Dr. Edmund Jones accepts a donation for the ENT Clinic from Volunteer Services President Carol Hazell (left).  Bottom:  Dr. Mark Bona (centre) speaks about the Low Vision Rehabilitation Clinic, to which Volunteer Services has pledged $10,000.

Joan CarstairsThe most magical gift:  3.5 hours of your time in support of patient care

Want to give others—and yourself—a magical gift this holiday season?  How about 3.5 hours of your week towards improving patient care?

Joan Carstairs gave herself that present last year when she started volunteering in the Brock Boutique at Hotel Dieu Hospital.  It’s a commitment that can be summed up in three words—best gift ever—if you’re someone who loves being around happy customers, beautiful merchandise and supportive staff. 

Even after a year Joan is still amazed at the range of people she meets and chats with every week, including hospital staff, and the opportunity to connect with them as they browse through a gift shop unique to downtown Kingston.  Being able to team up with other Boutique staff and volunteers is a big bonus, she says.  Not only does it give her some hands-on experience around retail merchandising but it also lets her spend quality social time with others who support and appreciate the skills and strengths she brings to her volunteer work.

In a sense, everyone is a happy customer.  “Someone’s always there to help me,” she says, “which makes it easy for me to help everyone who visits the Boutique.” 

Brock Boutique volunteers do a one 3.5 hour shift weekly, and their generous gift of time helps the Boutique to raise funds in support of patient care at Hotel Dieu Hospital.  If giving back to our community is on your holiday wish list and if you think you would enjoy a role similar to Joan’s, then please visit us at http://www.hoteldieu.com/careers-and-volunteers/volunteers.  Happy Holidays!