Dixie Regional lauds hospital volunteers for 43,000 service hours in 2015

ST. GEORGE — An army of volunteers, 300 strong, donated more than 43,000 service hours to Dixie Regional Medical Center in St. George in 2015 and an awards luncheon Thursday gave them honor.

More than 100 volunteers gather at DRMC luncheon, held at the Fish Rock Gille at the Ledges, St. George, Utah, Apr. 14, 2016| Photo by Cody Blowers, St. George News
More than 100 volunteers gather at DRMC luncheon, held at the Fish Rock Grille at the Ledges, St. George, Utah, Apr. 14, 2016| Photo by Cody Blowers, St. George News

Volunteers play an integral role in many areas and auxiliary units of Intermountain Healthcare’s Dixie Regional Medical Center, a not-for-profit provider that relies on the support of the community.

“They are truly the key to our success,” Cathy Hohn, volunteer director for Intermountain Healthcare’s Southwest Region, said.

Over 100 of the hospital volunteers attended Thursday’s luncheon at The Ledges’ Fish Rock Grille in St. George. Many received recognition for lifetime service and numerous others received awards for reaching service milestones last year.

“Our volunteers at Dixie are amazing,” Hohn said, “and they add the extra touches that provide extraordinary care to the patients.”

Volunteers assist in a variety of positions and departments; some of those are the following:

  • Cardiovascular Unit
  • Emergency Department
  • Gift shop
  • Greeters
  • Handcrafter’s Guild
  • Infusion services
  • Intensive Care Unit
  • Oncology
  • Same Day Surgery
  • Specialty Recovery
  • Triage

Additionally, many of the volunteers are cross-trained, which enables them to work in multiple departments or in different functions.  Whether it’s sitting with a relative who’s waiting for a loved one in surgery or spending time with a patient in oncology, volunteers function throughout and for the hospital and assist those who need it the most.

The volunteer “Pet Therapy Program” involves volunteers who provide dogs that have been specifically trained to visit patients in their rooms. It allows patients to spend time with an animal.

Sometimes that shared connection with an animal gives patients who need to talk a listening ear, pet therapy team member Joan D’Aoust said.

The Dixie Regional Volunteer Handcrafters Guild is a group of industrious and talented volunteers who get together once a week to sew, quilt, embroider or take on different projects. One recent project involved the creation of handcrafted dolls that were given to children admitted to the hospital. The dolls wore miniature hospital gowns the guild members sewed by hand.

“We are just a bunch of women that get together every Wednesday and have fun,” Handcrafter’s Guild volunteer Valeree Nielsen said. “At the same time, we are doing something for the community that we feel good about.”

The Hospital Thrift Store that operated since 1992 served as a vital part of the Intermountain Healthcare volunteer network. In March, the Thrift Store saw the end of an era as it transitioned to Switchpoint Community Resource Center (read more here).

The thrift store was managed by 7-year veteran David Waters, who said he led a a team of 30 volunteers working shifts varying from four to 40 hours weekly. Revenue that was generated by the store went into a nondiscretionary fund, he said, and could be used for whatever was needed at the hospital.

In addition to these functions many volunteers assist in the Intermountain Foundation of Dixie Regional’s signature fundraising event: Jubilee of Trees. The Jubilee showcases a wonderful selection of custom-designed Christmas trees, holiday items and puts on a full agenda of events for the community’s enjoyment during the weeklong show.

Volunteers are just a few of the many people who are vital resources for the medical center, Hohn said. Improving the patient experience and providing comfort, compassion and the little extras to each patient makes their effort worthwhile.

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Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2016, all rights reserved.



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