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Georgina McKelvie donates $80K to hospital to purchase life-saving technology

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Georgina McKelvie carried on with a lifetime of generosity and community building by making an $80,000 donation to the Owen Sound Regional Hospital Foundation for a piece of technology that will one day help local doctors save the lives of people in Grey and Bruce counties.

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The money will help the hospital buy a portable and computerized medical-simulation manikin that can simulate critical care scenarios, allowing physicians and staff across the region to enhance their skills and develop new ones in a controlled environment.

According to a media release from Grey Bruce Health Services and the Owen Sound Regional Hospital Foundation, the idea started a few years back when the Owen Sound Attack’s part-owner and then GBHS chief of staff Dr. Bob Severs was discussing with the McKelvies his frustration with trying to find an emergency room doctor to fill vacant shifts.

Georgina and her husband Ray McKelvie are longtime hospital foundation donors and well-known community boosters as well as Owen Sound Attack team supporters. Ray McKelvie was instrumental in bringing the Platers from Guelph and served as the team’s general manager for years. He’s now the director of business operations.

Dr. Severs explained to the Mckelvies that it is difficult to attract and retain emergency physicians and nurses in general but, in addition, the most severe and complicated medical emergencies are extremely anxiety-provoking and stressful. As physicians get further out from training, the stress of dealing with these problems increases and some choose to withdraw from that area of care.

The Attack’s management team stepped up and decided they would donate the funds over the next few years to help purchase the life-saving technology.

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However, Georgina had since been diagnosed with leukemia. So, “sitting on the edge of her palliative care bed at the Owen Sound Hospital, she wrote a cheque for $80,000 to purchase this technology,”  according to a media release.

The hospital foundation said Georgina told them she wanted to get involved and make the donation while she was still able to participate.

A breast cancer survivor for the past 16 years, diagnosed two and a half years ago with leukemia, Georgina says she’s had great care over the years at the Owen Sound Hospital, and she is thankful for the people in this area who give to so many causes.

“There are a lot of generous people in Owen Sound, not just us,” said Georgina in the media release.

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