Lefleche hospital is ‘very best’

“You have to change the light bulbs, look after the new born babies– you do everything. But in a small hospital, everyone is friends. You don’t have patients but friends.”

March 23, 2015

Since Dr. Kildaire, that ran on television decades ago,there have been shows about doctors and hospitals. Today, there are also shows about goings-on in ‘real life’ emergency rooms.

Rarely, do we see or read about what happens on a day-to-day basis in real hospitals. Few journalists do hospital profiles.

I have.

I doubt if I would have if I had not been reporting about happenings in small communities. You see, sometimes a reporter on a rural newspapers runs out of things to write about as small communities, due to smaller populations, have less going on than in urban centres.

This turned out to be really positive for me because I ended up writing a lot of profile articles that I would not have done otherwise.

I found them interesting to do and I think a lot of readers did, too. Also, I think the people, whether individuals or part of an institution or organization, who were my subjects were reminded that who they are or what  they do is meaningful.

Here is one of those articles:

Gravelbourg Gazette

October 19, 1983

Lafleche hospital is ‘very best’

by Tanya Lester

Tommy Thomas says the Lafleche Union Hospital is the “very best small hospital in the province.” The hospital’s administrator, director of nursing, and secretary-treasurer, claims it has everything that a large hospital has but on a smaller scale.

Having previously worked at the Union City Hospital, Mr. Thomas can accurately make such a comparison. “A smaller hospital is more hectic because you don’t have any backup,” he said. “You have to change the light bulbs, look after the new born babies — you do everything. But in a small hospital everyone is friends. You don’t have patients but friends.”

The ten bed hospital with a staff of one resident doctor, seven

registered nurses, one laboratory and x-ray technician, two cooks, two cleaning people and one maintenance person handles primary care cases. Those people needing major surgery are sent to a Regina  hospital but often recuperate in the Lafleche Union Hospital. There are never more than two patients per room.

There are about 20 births a year in the maternity ward. For the past five or six years, fathers, and even the brothers and sisters, have been allowed to be with the mothers while they give birth. Many hospitals have still not taken this progressive step.

The hospital has some very good transportable equipment. According to Mr. Thomas, the transport incubator, which is a small covered bed used to transport a baby in an emergency, was purchased fifteen years ago. It was the first in the area and for several years the machine was borrowed for use by other hospitals.

The Lafleche Lion’s Club donated the money for an $8,000 infant resuscitator,  equipped with an overhead heater, and used for babies who have health problems when they are born.

A defibrillator, also, was donated by local residents. It is a machine used to give electric shocks.  It is portable so it can be used, for example, when a farmer has heart trouble out in the field. In such cases, the machine can run on batteries.

The hospital board is composed of members from the rural municipality of Wood River No. 74 and Waverley No. 44, the Town of Lafleche, and the Glentworth and Woodrow villages.

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