Kiwanis Club of Ottawa contributes $500,000 toward CAT Scan at Civic

DID YOU KNOW ... ... that the Kiwanis Club of Ottawa was instrumental in organizing and raising money for the first C.A.T. scanner (1986-1990) at the Ottawa Civic Hospital. Not only did our Club contribute $250,000 ($125,000 from the Medical Foundation and $125,000 from general funds), we also played a major role in securing gifts of another $250,000 from other Kiwanis Clubs in the area.

A C.A.T. scanner is a revolutionary technique for seeing into the body and saving a life. A combination of sophisticated x-ray imaging and computer technology, the Scanner produces an exact cross-section of the patient’s body. The image shows a “slice” of the problem area, revealing organs, bone, and tissue in accurate detail. It is absolutely essential in detecting tumors before they become life threatening. The procedure is painless and often eliminates the need for exploratory surgery and other intrusive tests. And most important of all, it is the best diagnostic technique available for detecting problems in early stages of development.

The C.A.T. scanner purchased through the Kiwanis Club of Ottawa’s campaign began operation in 1986, and has greatly reduced the waiting time for the procedure -- in the first six years of operation, the scanner served nearly 50,000 patients. The reduced waiting time, reduced the level of stress on patients anxious about their health A plaque recognizing this tremendous contribution of our Club is located in the waiting room of the MRI and C.A.T. Scanner Unit. This project helped to make a lasting and positive change in our community and continues to do so today. The C.A.T. scanner was an important and necessary step in maintaining the high quality of health care provided at the Civic Hospital.

Our Club provided strong leadership within the Ottawa Civic Hospital’s C.A.T. Campaign through our commitment to make this project a reality. We also diligently promoted the project among other Kiwanis Clubs and recruited them to actively participate in raising money for this project.

Of the $1.7 million required, Kiwanis Clubs of Eastern Ontario were responsible for raising $500,000 – nearly 1/3 of the total needed. Under the direction of a sub-committee made up of Kiwanians Tom Beverage, Chuck Anderson, Mike Lundy and Tony Fisher, along with the Ottawa Civic Hospital’s C.A.T. Campaign Committee, headed by Vic Jones, a recent member of our Club, this project successfully provided a critical piece of state-of-the-art equipment benefiting the Ottawa community. And apart from the obvious benefits to the community, this project brought a residual benefit to the Club. Our involvement in the C.A.T. Campaign allowed our Medical Foundation to host a Grey Cup party at the Civic Centre in 1988 -- an event which netted our Club just over $73,000.

I was honoured to be invited to provide this historical perspective on one of our Club’s major accomplishments. I was also, I must admit, a bit concerned. Since I did not join the Kiwanis Club of Ottawa until 1989, I had not followed the project through its various stages. Doing the research for this article gave me new insight into the important work of the Kiwanis Club of Ottawa and a strengthened pride in our traditions. -- Neil McDonald