Conemaugh Memorial Medical Center and the Center for Organ Recovery and Education (CORE) hosted its 4th Annual Donor Recognition Wall rededication ceremony on Wednesday, April 23, 2014. The donor wall, located on the 3rd floor of the main campus Clinical Pavilion, is dedicated to all organ, tissue and eye donors. The ceremony is held annually during National Donate Life Month in April. The goal of this month long observance is to highlight the critical need for designated donors.
Ron Vickory, Chairman of the Conemaugh Health System Board of Directors and member of the CORE Board of Directors, made the announcement regarding the expansion of the recognition wall. "With the growing need for organ, tissue and eye donors, it is only fitting that we expand our recognition of our heroes within the Conemaugh Health System who have already given the gift of life," said Vickroy, addressing a crowd of donor families, friends, Conemaugh employees and guests.
Conemaugh Memorial is a two-time recipient of the Thomas Poliziani Living Legacy Scholarship, by the Pennsylvania Hospital Collaborative in Pittsburgh, which helped fund the creation and implementation of the wall.
Originally, the recognition wall included frames for 22 photos of donors. The original section of the wall now includes frames for 35 photos. The expansion of the wall includes a "life tree" and words emulating the characteristics of donors including caring, compassion, respect and love. A poem entitled "My Final Gift", written by Suzanne Anderson, the late wife of a CORE employee, is etched on a glass piece. An interactive kiosk will soon be added to the wall in coming months including a database of Conemaugh Health System donors including names, photos and year of donation.
"Our Donor Advisory Committee has spent the last year designing and planning for this expansion," says Pamela Swansboro, Donor Advisory Committee Chairperson and Director of Nursing Practice, Conemaugh Memorial Medical Center. "It is important to remember and honor those who have selflessly committed to help others. We recognize these donors every day when we walk past this wall. We invite everyone to visit Conemaugh Memorial Medical Center's main campus to see this wonderful tribute to our donors."
Donations in 2013 by Conemaugh Health System patients resulted in 29 life-saving organ transplants, 54 cornea transplants and as many as 1,700 life-enhancing tissue transplants. Additionally, countless individuals may someday benefit from organs and tissues that were recovered for research.
The rededication event was coordinated by Conemaugh Health System's Donor Advisory Committee which works to increase organ donor awareness and education within the Health System and the surrounding community. The Advisory Committee consists of Conemaugh employees from both clinical and non-clinical departments. Each member provides valuable insight to patient needs in relation to organ donation.
To learn more about organ donation, including how to register to be an organ donor, visit www.conemaugh.org/OrganDonation.
About Conemaugh Health System
Conemaugh Health System is the largest healthcare provider in west central Pennsylvania, serving over a half-million patients each year through the Conemaugh Physician Group and Medical Staff, a network of hospitals, specialty clinics and patient focused programs. Conemaugh’s 4,500+ employees and 350+ physicians are committed to excellence and repeatedly earn state and national recognition for exceptional clinical outcomes. Conemaugh Memorial Medical Center, the system’s flagship hospital, provides sophisticated technology, the highest levels of trauma and neonatal intensive care and a committed history of training tomorrow’s physician, nurses and allied health providers. For more information on Conemaugh, visit us at www.conemaugh.org or follow us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/Conemaugh.
For More Information, Please Contact:
Amy Bradley, Director of Public Affairs
Phone: (814) 534-3121