Date: 3/3/2009

St. Mary Medical Center Auxiliary Contributes $100,000 to Hospital Departments

HOBART — The St. Mary Medical Center Auxiliary has made a $100,000 donation to fund new hospital equipment across multiple departments. In the last decade, the Auxiliary has donated more than $1 million to the growing hospital and its patient care initiatives.

This year, the contribution helped purchase infant bassinets as well as new bililights and warmers in the hospital’s Labor and Delivery department. Bililights are LED lights that help reduce jaundice in newborns. This new technology can reduce hospitalization time for these infants by as much as 50 percent, allowing parents to bring their newborns home sooner and healthier.

For the hospital’s Acute Rehabilitation Unit, the Auxiliary funded new equipment designed to help patients who are immobile or those who need assistance standing. These standing aids and lifts help provide a more comfortable experience for hospitalized patients undergoing intense physical therapy and rehabilitation. Auxiliary funds were also used to purchase the newest model blood pressure monitors and stands.

“Items such as these are vital to maintaining our outstanding level of care,” said Janice Ryba, CEO of St. Mary Medical Center. “Combined with the comfort and support of volunteers, our patients know they are receiving the best health care available in Northwest Indiana.”

John Gorski, chief operating officer of Community Healthcare System accepted the donation on behalf of St. Mary Medical Center at the Auxiliary’s annual breakfast.

“Volunteers are often the first person patients and families see when they walk through our doors,” said Gorski. “Auxiliary members have worked hard through the years to support St. Mary Medical Center financially, but it’s their warmth and respect for the human spirit that is conveyed throughout the entire hospital every day.”

In 2008, the Auxiliary provided more than 61,000 hours of volunteer service to the hospital and raised funds through sales from the hospital Gift Shop, and Garden Café as well as a variety of events throughout the year.