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Seneca Healthcare District Auxiliary hosts officers installation

The Chester Progressive of Chester, California

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The Seneca Healthcare District Auxiliary's luncheon, annual meeting and installation of officers was held June 10 at the Elks Lodge in Chester.

Outgoing Auxiliary President Jude Morse opened the meeting with information on the results of the group's fundraising efforts that help support the operations of the Seneca hospital.

After Carlene Slusher, director of finance for Seneca, introduced the visiting hospital staff, the topic turned to the success of the recent blood drive that was held June 1 at the Elks Lodge.

Morse thanked the Elks for graciously donating their building twice a year for the drive.

She said that one of the technicians told her that almost all the donor prep kits on hand were used because there were a number of walk-ins, which resulted in the drive being a great success.

The blood drive "exceeded everyone's expectations," Morse said, with wait times for donors less than 10 minutes long.

Game Day event coordinator Julie Azevedo reminded those in attendance about the upcoming Game Day to be held at the Lake Almanor Country Club on June 26 at 10 a.m.

Guests donate $35, which includes lunch and game play, with a separate donation for the giveaway to help raise funds for Auxiliary-sponsored scholarships that are awarded to graduating students.

Azevedo requested that Auxiliary members participate in the fundraiser and ask friends and businesses to donate as well.

On a new topic, Morse reported that the Auxiliary had its year-end income and expense report accounts audited recently and they were found to be copacetic.

Slusher provided additional details about an upcoming event at the hospital.

"We're going to be doing our Health & Wellness Fair on June 23, 24 and 25 from 6 to 10 a.m. at the Lake Almanor clinic conference room," Slusher announced.

She said wellness screening volunteers are still needed for the event; anyone interested in donating time to help make the event successful can email, or call Marie Stuersel at 258-2159.

Slusher said the hospital has expanded the walk-in clinic hours to 10 a day, six days a week, Monday through Saturday for the duration of the summer.

"We also decided to be open on the Fourth of July and on Sunday the 5th of July just in case."

A new physician interview was held recently with the medical staff for a permanent position at Seneca, Slusher shared, "and we mutually agreed that this would be a good place for him. So we're very hopeful to bring him on board soon."

Morse said she thought it would be appropriate to show the culmination of the hard work of the Auxiliary's very successful donation drive.

Morse, Slusher and Auxiliary Vice President Cathy Rideout held up an oversized check made out to Seneca Healthcare District in the amount of $23,780.28.

"With this money, we were not only able to fulfill the hospital's original wish list, but were able to purchase an additional item, too," Morse said.

Slusher said the funds allowed the purchase of a number of medical devices for the hospital such as a tonometer, an eye pressure gauge for the emergency room, a Woods lamp for diagnosing the degree of damage of an eye injury, an oxygen compressor used with a ventilation system so that the respiratory therapist doesn't have to constantly change the oxygen tanks during treatments, a leg holder for the table in the operating room for the orthopedic surgeon, replacing one that was no longer functioning properly, plus a bladder scanner used in the ER and acute wing of the hospital during procedures to measure how much fluid is in the bladder, which replaced a more invasive procedure.

Morse said she was delighted that they were able to purchase needed items that were requested by the hospital staff.

"The community came together and totally funded everything," she said.

Although the donation drive that's put on each year is a very important function of the Auxiliary, donations are sought throughout the year, Morse added.

She pointed out that since its inception, Seneca Healthcare District Auxiliary has donated well over a half-million dollars to the hospital.

Rideout stood at the front of the room and shared some thoughts she had with the attendees on the donation drive.

"I want to take the opportunity to acknowledge those of you who through the years have... brought different ideas and worked hard to improve our efforts," she said.

"It's interesting to look back and see the amazing progress that has been made through the years. We thank Seneca hospital for their sincere support and generous appreciation."

Also thanked were the many volunteers who worked both inside and outside the hospital.

Rideout said she wanted to take a moment to honor the outgoing president, Jude Morse, for her outstanding leadership.

"I cannot thank you enough for your support and encouragement," Rideout said.

Morse read a letter she received from Seneca CEO Linda Wagner thanking the Auxiliary for its efforts.

Next on the agenda was the installation of the incoming officers of the Seneca Auxiliary.

Auxiliary member Carolyn Willhoit presented the new officers with different colored flowers to represent the various skills they brought to the organization.

They included newly elected President Kaye Swanson; Vice President Cathy Rideout; Secretary Janet Owens; Treasurer Toddy Cutler; and Director of Seneca Auxiliary Dorothy Stroup.

Morse symbolically passed the president's gavel to the new president, Swanson, who said she thanked the members for their confidence in her.

"This is the greatest group of ladies I've ever worked with," Swanson said. "I think together we're going to have a great year."

The next general meeting of the Auxiliary is scheduled for July 8 in the Seneca clinic conference room.

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Original Publication Date: June 17, 2015

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