Dana Thomas and Sharon Fekete of Penticton Regional Hospital display a respiratory ventilator similar to a model being purchased through a $15,000 grant from TB Vets. Submitted photo

Breathing a little easier at Penticton Regional Hospital

TB Vets fund new respiratory equipment for PRH

The intensive care unit at Penticton Regional Hospital has received funding for some essential respiratory equipment, courtesy of the TB Vets.

The TB Vets Charitable Foundation has awarded a $15,000 grant to PRH for a new V60 ventilator, generically known as a “bilevel positive airway pressure (BiPAP) ventilator. Last year in the hospital’s ICU the ventilator helped 62 patients.

“This valuable and frequently accessed equipment is used for many patients with a wide range of respiratory and cardiac issues to help stave off invasive ventilation and intubation,” said Dana Thomas, professional practice leader for Respiratory Services at PRH.

“This equipment can help many patients get through an acute respiratory event where they are experiencing extreme shortness of breath and need time to allow medications or therapies to work,” she said. “It also provides an alternative for patients who do not wish to have invasive measures taken to support their breathing.”

The TB Vets funding from its 2018 Frontline Heroes program allows PRH to purchase a Phillips V60 ventilator, which will replace an older model unit that was no longer repairable. This new ventilator will also be available to help patients in the emergency department in addition to the ICU.

Kandys Merola, executive director of the TB Vets, said the grant to Penticton Regional Hospital is among several such gifts awarded to medical teams and first responders throughout B.C. each year.

“The critical need for life-saving respiratory equipment is endless,” Merola said. “The new equipment helps your frontline heroes save lives.”

The TB Vets funding was provided to PRH through the South Okanagan Similkameen Medical Foundation. The ventilator grant is separate from the Foundation’s campaign to provide medical equipment for the current hospital expansion, which is expected to open in late April.

Related: Major milestone for Penticton hospital construction


Steve Kidd
Senior reporter, Penticton Western News
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