Cowichan hospital provides excellent care

I stress while more staff is needed at CDH, those pros who cared for me were basically magnificent.

Cowichan hospital provides excellent care

Dear Premier John Horgan and Cowichan Valley Hospital District board directors:

This an overdue letter expressing my delight and gratitude to the kind staff and volunteers at our wonderful Cowichan District Hospital following two emergency abdominal surgeries I underwent last month.

Little wonder folks such as Duncan’s Alanah McGinley also praised CDH in her Jan. 18 letter to the Citizen. I sure echo her feelings about the vital, compassionate role CDH plays — and has played for decades — in our great community.

Indeed, that’s why Valley visionaries raised the money and built CDH back in the 1960s.

From my surgeons Marilyn Vanderputten and Erik Saettler, to my family doctor Bryan Bass, to the many nurses, LPNs, dieticians, pharmacists and orderlies, I get gold-plated care at CDH.

In fact, that’s what we should expect from our many precious medical facilities.

While budget beancounters may wish to cut corners at CDH and other hospitals, maybe they should spend some time in urgent places such as CDH to see first-hand the commitment and caregiving patients receive around the clock.

And folks who complain about hospital food have likely never stayed in hospital where many patients have little appetite at all. Still, my chow was varied and home-cooked, not merely packaged pablum.

I stress while more staff is needed at CDH, those pros who cared for me were basically magnificent.

Nothing underlines the true importance of medical-care spending than when one is ill; once nausea and/or pain take hold, no amount of money spent on health care seems trivial.

God bless those Cowichanians who give generously to CDH and its family of caregivers.

While a new CDH is planned for Bell-McKinnon Road, as promised by Victoria, I hope and expect that new facility offers at least 250 staffed, private rooms to allow proper healing.

The exact number of beds for our new $500-million CDH is basically in limbo at present while our current 97-bed hospital heroically handles chronic overcrowding involving some 150 patients daily.

That’s terrible, but proves the brave efforts of CDH’s staff at all levels.

Conversely, I hope our current CDH can serve as a patient-care facility once the new CDH opens. Mere demolition would seem such a waste of a space that’s served us so well.

We need long-term medical-care thinking now to handle our aging population.

Just ask well-attended folks in beds behind mere curtains on CDH’s busy 3 South floor if more rooms for privacy and healing are needed.

I realize our current hospital contains asbestos, though Island Health and other government bodies quickly explain that material is safe if left undisturbed.

The last thing on my troubled mind last month at CDH was fear about asbestos.

Meanwhile, I’m damned grateful to have had loving support from my friends and family.

I’m also proud Cowichan District Hospital is on duty 24/7 helping our growing community.

Peter W. Rusland

Duncan

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