Five local Lions groups recently made a large donation to East Grampians Health Service Dialysis Unit as part of the 1.25 million upgrade to this facility. Working together with Lions Australia, local Lions groups donated $7,400 towards two new dialysis chairs at the Health Service.
The current dialysis unit is operating in the Theatre Unit of the Health Service with very limited space. Due to the growing demand for dialysis treatment, the Health Service is going through a large-scale re-structure of its’ clinical treatment areas.
Dialysis will be moving to where chemotherapy was previously. This will allow for at least nine dialysis chairs. Chemotherapy will be moving to where the Physiotherapy Department is, and then Physiotherapy will moved down to the Community Health Centre for better accessibility.
The whole re-structure and move of departments will allow for bigger capabilities for growing demand of dialysis treatment in our community. The high levels of lifestyle related illnesses, chronic disease, and obesity in our community needs urgent attention. By better integration and sensible structures within the Health Service, the Health Service can deliver a more efficient service to the community.
Mr. Norm Tosch, the Ararat Lions President, played an instrumental role in pulling all the Lions groups together in the region to help make a significant donation towards the Dialysis Unit at the Health Service, said “I was first approached by Lion Max Howden of Lions Club of Stawell, who is also a patient at the East Grampians Health Service Dialysis Unit to help provide new chairs in the Dialysis Unit.
The EGHS Dialysis Unit covers areas that include all clubs in Zone 9 with the potential to have many members of their communities requiring the service, we then decided to make it a Zone project with Lions Clubs of Lake Bolac, Willaura, Skipton, Stawell and Ararat all contributing funds, which was then matched by a grant from Australian Lions Foundation.
Mr Tosch also commented that “East Grampian Health Services CEO Mr Nick Bush advised Lions of the growing demand for Dialysis treatment and that a new Dialysis Unit with more space was about to be opened and that the more chairs would be welcome. I would also like to thank all Lions Clubs involved and the Australian Lions Foundation.”
Mr Brian Lomax, East Grampians Health Service Peri-operative Manager who oversees Dialysis treatment in the Theatre Unit said that ”the personal contributions of time and efforts by members of Lions Clubs had resulted in this tremendous contribution to meeting the ongoing needs of those members of our communities undergoing Haemodialysis treatment in Ararat. It was a good opportunity for the representatives of the Clubs to meet patients and staff members. Patients, staff and the group looked at the site for the new unit with questions and answers during the tour. I was able to deliver a personal ‘Thank you’ from our patients to those who devote so much of their time for the good of others.
As part of acknowledging the tremendous effort and initiative shown by Ararat, Stawell, Willaura and Skipton Lions, all these clubs were invited along to the current dialysis unit and the future dialysis areas. Mr. Danny Drake East Grampians Health Service Community Liaison Officer stated that “The Health Service is fortunate to have organsisations such as the Lions in our local community that understand the needs of their local communities and put their hard fundraising efforts in the best possible places. Lions have been strong contributors over many years to the health service, a relationship that we honor and value to have.”