Delma Rourk’s eyes filled with tears as she cut a ribbon Tuesday afternoon at Allen County Hospital during the dedication ceremony for the Deloris M. Johnson Imaging Center given in honor of Johnson’s parents’ Millie and Inar Johnson.
Johnson and Rourk were cousins. The two were born nine months apart in Allen County and had remained close their entire lives, even though Rourk grew up in Iola and Johnson in California.
“Deloris always told me it was her dream to leave a legacy to Allen County. She wanted to see improvements made to the hospital,” Rourk said.
The Johnsons moved from Iola to California in the 1940s to find work. Inar spent a number of years working in the lumber mills in Scotia and Deloris found employment in banking.
After Johnson’s death a couple of years ago Rourk administered Johnson’s wishes that the county be given in excess of $335,000 to buy new equipment for the hospital.
“WE ARE so grateful to the Johnson family for making it possible for the hospital to upgrade its equipment,” said Joyce Heismeyer, chief executive officer at ACH.
A portion of the money was used to buy computer radiography equipment which produces digital images.
“It is so wonderful that we can now produce images on compact disks instead of having to use film which was kept in bulky files,” said Katie Gant, director of radiology.
Another new piece of equipment is the Picture Archival Communication System (PACS). Images stored on the PACS may be viewed on any computer at the hospital, expediting treatment of patients.
A new radiology reading center has also been installed with large monitors making it easier for the radiologist to diagnose X-rays.
“It is much more convenient not having to deal with film. Multiple images come up here on my screens for more efficient comparisons,” said Kevin Hughes, hospital radiologist.
The improvements to the hospital are intended to produce faster and more accurate results and a shorter wait time for patients. Without the donation from Deloris Johnson the hospital would not have been able to afford the new equipment, Heismeyer said.
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