SOUTH Gippsland Hospital has reintroduced awards recognising outstanding service, support and commitment to the hospital at their Annual General Meeting on November 30.
“The concept of Life Governors dates back to the time the hospital was established but the criteria were restrictive and did not enable acknowledgement of a broad range of contribution by different sectors of the community,” said Board Chair, Sue Pilkington.
“The Board is delighted after a hiatus of 10 years, to present Honorary Life Governorship to 11 members of the community who have given so much to the hospital in different ways.
She explained that while the new policy had enabled the hospital to make quite a few awards this year, in future years she expected that only one to two Honorary Life Governorships were likely to be eligible for consideration.
“With a new policy we can formally say ‘thank you’ to past Auxiliary members, Board members and other individuals for their dedication to the work of South Gippsland Hospital,” she said.
“This year we are honouring three members of the Hospital Auxiliary as well as a number of previous Board members and an independent member of one of our Board Committees,” she said.
The members of the Hospital Auxiliary receiving the awards were Val Hutcheson, Karen Rathjen and Jeanette Allan.
Val Hutcheson came to Foster 19 years ago and joined the Auxiliary in 1999. She held the role of Auxiliary Treasurer for 8 years and was also the Vice President for a number of years and has made many friends in the Auxiliary. She is also a member of Probus and has the role of membership registrar and has played a big role in organising the club’s tours.
Karen Rathjen joined the Auxiliary about 15 years ago and undertook the demanding role of Catering Manager for six years. She also enjoys the friendships made through the group and the satisfaction of working with a ‘giving’ organisation.
She volunteered at the primary school in cooking and craft and works for the Foster Football Club. Karen is well-known in Foster for the help she has provided to many people in need.
Jeanette Allan came to Foster in 1960 and joined the Auxiliary about 25 years ago. She has held the position of President of the Auxiliary for three terms, and has also held the roles of Vice President and Secretary.
She volunteers with cooking and craft at the primary school and worked tirelessly to assist with the annual Foster Show for many years. Members of the community may also remember Jeanette’s involvement with the Red Cross Blood Bank when the bank’s monthly visits were made to Foster.
She, like Karen and Jeanette, enjoys the friendships she has made through the Auxiliary and the challenge to assist the hospital to purchase the most up to date equipment and maintain the best possible level of care for the community.
“The Hospital Auxiliary celebrated its eightieth birthday in October this year. Although we are talking about an event that is outside of the year this AGM is concerned with it wouldn’t be right to wait until next year’s AGM to acknowledge this significant milestone,” Sue Pilkington said.
“Over its 80 years of continuous operation the Auxiliary has funded some $662,000 worth of equipment for the hospital.”
The Board members who received the Honorary Life Governor awards were Mohya Davies, Bill Fuller, Megan Knight, Bruce Lester, Rod Lomax, Neil Roussac, Lee-Anne Van Dyke, and Clive White.
Mohya Davies was on the Board from 1986 to 2016 and has been a member of the following committees: Medical Appointments Advisory, House and Works, Planning, Audit and Risk Management. In addition, she has held the positions of: Board Chair, Senior Vice President, Chair Planning Committee.
Bill Fuller was on the Board from 2000 to 2014 and has been a member of the following committees: Finance, Audit and Risk Management, Medical Appointments Advisory, Remuneration. In addition, he has held the positions of: Board Chair, Treasurer, Chair Audit Committee.
Meg Edwards has been on the Board from 2004 to 2015 and was a member of the following committees: Planning, House and Works, Finance, Audit and Risk Management, Quality, Medical Appointments Advisory. In addition, she has held the positions of: Vice President, Assistant Treasurer, Board Chair, Chair Planning Committee.
Bruce Lester has been a member of the Board 1996 to 2006 and again from 2009 to 2017 and has been a member of the following committees: Finance, Audit and Risk Management, Planning. In addition, he has held the positions of: Board Chair, Treasurer, Chair of Finance Committee, Chair of Audit and Risk Management Committee. A highlight of his time with the Board was the establishment of the South Gippsland Hospital Community Foundation.
Rod Lomax has been an Independent member of Audit and Risk Management Committee 2006 to present. He is valued and appreciated for his continued participation in the Audit and Risk Management Committee and his involvement in governance at South Gippsland Hospital.
Neil Roussac was on the Board from 2006 to 2017 and was the immediate past Board Chair. He has been a member of the following committees: Finance, Audit and Risk Management, Quality. In addition, he has held the positions of: Treasurer, Chair Audit Committee and was Board Chair for the last four years. He provided strong leadership and support.
Lee-Anne Van Dyke was on the Board from 1999 to 2013. She has been a member of the following committees: Finance, Planning, House and Works, Quality, Remuneration. In addition, she has held the positions of: Senior Vice President, Board Chair.
Clive White was on the Board from Board from 1986 to 2017. He has been a member of the following committees: Finance, Audit and Risk Management, Planning, Quality, Remuneration. In addition, he has held the positions of: Board Chair, Treasurer, Chair of Finance Committee, Chair of Planning Committee.
Clive has provided numerous Board members with wise counsel over many years, in relation to industrial relations, legal aspects of development of a Foster Health Precinct and Directors’ duties and responsibilities.
Sue Pilkington said that past members of the SGH Board have contributed towards major infrastructure changes and initiatives such as the development of the Community Health Centre and its later extension, the addition of the radiology facility and installation of CT scanner, redevelopment of the nurses’ station and Urgent Care Clinic and the installation of solar panels.
The list continues with the establishment of the South Gippsland Hospital Community Foundation and the active engagement in Gippsland South Coast Service Planning development of Foster Health Precinct along with support for and development of the Youth Assist Clinic