The surgical services department: TMH staff gives reasons to vote 'yes'

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— To the editor:

In a few days our community has a vital decision to make that will impact our future for generations to come. This decision is the proposal of Referendum 1A, asking taxpayers to assist with the funding of a new hospital. The employees of the Surgical Services Department at TMH would like to share with you why we support voting "yes" on 1A.

In our department, we struggle from day-to-day with space constraints, temperature extremes and an aging structure. Our area, lovingly known as the "OR Hallway" is just that, a hallway with operating rooms attached to it. Carts used to bring patients to and from the OR are parked in this 7-foot hallway leaving little room to navigate patients and/or equipment as needed. State of the art equipment is crammed into a small storage space and when needed must be driven through this hallway to be placed in the surgical suite, leaving little room for the staff to move around. The air handling system is in a state of constant repair just to keep the temperatures and humidity level within acceptable parameters. Thankfully, we have a great group of maintenance staff to maintain the air handler and keep it running efficiently. Our lighting system is outdated and storage space has been stretched to the maximum.

Our overall goal is to provide you with the very best care possible and to ensure your stay at TMH is safe. From a surgical standpoint, we are limited only by the building itself as we already have a very talented staff and physician base. Certain physicians have been willing to practice their skills here only to discover they cannot due to area constraints. Our biggest operating room is about the size of a master bedroom and the other room is only half it's size. We have been planning a remarkably effective and efficient surgical services area for the new hospital that will not only serve our public better, but will bring many needed service to the community. Such services would include spine surgery, obstetrics, and an increase in the general and orthopedic services already available. As a comparison, the new hospital would not be a Ferrari, but more like a Ford Mustang; nothing over the top, but efficient and effective.

As our community grows and expands in the next decades, it is imperative that we can offer our citizens the highest quality of health care available. Please join us in voting yes on 1A, not only for your future use, but for your children and their children to follow. Craig needs to step into the 21st century and this is a great place to start. We cannot imagine Craig without a hospital and in truth, we don't want to. Without 1A, this thought may just become our reality.

Thank you.

The surgical services department of The Memorial Hospital

Bill Bertram

Beth Koonce

Sharon Chapman

Mary Thomson

Kathleen Forgay

Sammi Staman

David Moore

Kelly Weber

Mike Lyon

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