New Technology for Crisis Care

The word “crisis” gets used a lot.  Sometimes, it’s used as an overstatement.  However, there are at least two places this word can be used without any argument.  If you can’t breathe, or if your heart can’t beat normally, that’s definitely a crisis.  And now, thanks to very generous donors, we have some amazing new technology to help with these critical situations.

The Pediatric Glidescope

Let’s say a 5-year old girl child is rushed to the Emergency Room because she’s choking and can’t breathe. The first order of business is to regulate her breathing. That means a small tube must be inserted in her airway so she can get oxygen.

You may not have peered down the throat of a little person lately, but that airway is tiny! And the throat is full of important obstacles you don’t want to puncture as you insert that tube. A pediatric glidescope is just the tool for the job, and now we have one.

The glidescope provides a high-definition camera that doctors can use to carefully insert a tube without damaging any other vital parts. Thanks to generous donors, we have upgraded to a glidescope that can easily switch between an adult and a pediatric-size camera. It will give our ER doctors a crystal-clear view of where to insert tubes when needed.

We sincerely thank the Tri-Cities Kiwanis Club for its $10,000 gift in memory of Earl O’Brien, which allowed us to purchase this equipment. According to Kiwanis member, Dr. Gary Robertson, this particular donation had special significance to them. “The Tri-Cities Kiwanis Club purchased this valuable pediatric scope for NOCHS because we strongly support our local hospital, and the focus of Kiwanis has always been on the wellbeing of children,” Dr. Robertson notes. “The funds for this donation were obtained through our annual salmon fishing tournaments, which were created by the late Earl O’Brien, a long-time member of Tri-Cities Kiwanis.”

3D Echocardiogram

Heart disorders can present themselves in many ways. But here’s one you may not know about: the role heart health plays in cancer treatment.

Let’s say a 42-year-old mother comes in for a mammogram, and the tests uncover a fast-growing cancer.  Before an oncologist can start radiation or chemotherapy, he or she needs to know if the woman’s heart can take the strain.

Our new 3D echocardiogram can provide pictures and video of that heart pumping. The doctor can look at tissue health, pumping strength, and all details of the heart from every angle. And here’s the really important part: a doctor who’s not even on site can view the imagery. So rather than waiting weeks for an appointment to find out results, this cancer patient can get the green light to start immediate treatment. This is an especially useful way to involve our Muskegon-based collaborating partners, Westshore Cardiology, on days when they are not in their offices here on our campus.

Although NOCHS already had an echocardiogram machine, it did not offer remote viewing or 3D capability. Now, we have doubled our capacity and cut the wait time for student athletes, cancer patients, people with COPD or heart murmurs, and a vast array of other patients with cardiac concerns.

Once again, we sincerely thank the people of this community who stepped up with gifts to make this investment possible. That list includes the 100 + Tri-Cities Women Who Care, the 100 Men Who Give – Tri-Cities, attendees at the 100th anniversary celebration last year, the North Ottawa Hospital Auxiliary, the 1919 NOCHS Giving Circle of physicians, Marvin and Jerene DeWitt Foundation, Samuel L. Westerman Foundation, Alvin E. and Mary C. Jacobson Family Fund, Jerry and Ruth Hoogerheide, the N. Kay Doss Memorial Fund and many individual donors.  Thank you for your caring generosity!


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