Janice Perrino, Nanaimo Hospital Foundation chief executive officer, hold a cheque for $2.23 million at the Nanaimo Regional General Hospital. The majority of the $2.23 million has been donated to the hospital for the purchase of medical equipment. (Photo contributed)

Foundation donates millions to Nanaimo hospital

Money to be used for medical equipment

Millions of dollars have been donated to Nanaimo’s regional hospital.

Earlier this month, the Nanaimo Hospital Foundation donated $2,223,203 to Vancouver Island Health Authority, of which $2,069,963 was donated to Nanaimo Regional General Hospital.

Janice Perrino, the foundation’s chief executive officer said, the donated money has been used to cover recent purchases at the hospital.

“It’s all for medical equipment,” Perrino said. “It went for a variety different things including operating room equipment.”

Perrino said the more than $2 million was raised mostly last year and partly into this year. She said the foundation tries to raise money as quickly as possible and then donate it to the hospital in a speedy fashion.

“We try to raise it all and give it as soon as we can.”

An additional $80,000 was also donated by the foundation to the health authority for staff education, according to Perrino.

“It’s incredible,” she said. “It’s one of those things where you just realize this community is just so giving and because of that we are able to help our hospital on a ongoing basis and it is a real thrill.”

The foundation is now aiming to raise $350,000 for an recumbent bicycle exercise machine and an echo cardiograph machine. Both devices will be used in NRGH’s cardiac department.

“We’re buying this whole unit, it’s about $288,000, as well as lots of other small pieces of equipment that we are paying for,” she said.

To help raise money, the foundation is kicking off its Spring ‘Healthy Hearts’ campaign, which includes the Run for Life, a five-kilometre run or walk event on May 28 at Bowen Park.

Perrino said once the money is raised for the cardiac equipment, the foundation will turn its attention to other areas of need at the hospital.

“With our hospital, it never ends,” Perrino said.

For more information on the campaign, please visit www.nanaimohospitalfoundation.com and more additional information on Run for Life, visit http://bit.ly/2pNQoKB