Even in a pandemic, Lions are finding ways to serve and Lions Clubs International Foundation (LCIF) is supporting them. Overall, LCIF has awarded 333 grants totaling more than US$5 million to Lions as they work to protect their communities during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
In the country of Suriname in South America, Lions used a US$10,000 Emergency grant from LCIF to build a hospital triage center separate from the hospital building. This new addition plays a key part in keeping patients and hospital staff safe.
Patients were relieved that they could wait for their COVID-19 test results in the comfort of the cabin.
In Paramaribo, Suriname, s’Lands Hospital was at full capacity. Its triage units did not have any more room for patients. In fact, they began to expand their dermatology unit to create more beds for patients with COVID-19. Nurses and security guards stood at all the entrances of the hospital to take the temperature of every visitor. They desperately needed more space and a more efficient way of screening visitors. So they reached out to a well-known service leader in their community, the Lions. Up for the challenge, but needing some financial assistance, Lions of District 60-A turned to LCIF, which awarded them US$10,000 for building a new triage area separate from the main hospital building.
The Triage Cabin is strictly for patients exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19, helping to limit their contact with the rest of the hospital. With more than 1,200 visitors each day, s’Lands Hospital is bustling with patients of all kinds, including high-risk groups such as women who are pregnant.
The cabin, containing chairs, a bed, and a sanitation station, was put to immediate use. In addition to the new space, there is an infrared thermometer at the entrance of the cabin, a device that can take a visitor’s temperature without any human contact. Suze Holband, director of nursing for the hospital, was especially grateful for the hands-free thermometer, which saves manpower and reduces the wait time for patients. Holband also reports that patients are relieved that they can wait for their COVID-19 test results in the comfort of the cabin instead of being directed to various places around the hospital.
As the duration of COVID-19 is unknown and there is not a vaccine yet for prevention, this permanent Triage Cabin will be immensely helpful. Even post-pandemic, the triage center will continue to provide extra accommodations for patients and continue to limit contact with potentially contagious patients.
Lions of District 60-A have proven that even during a pandemic, where there is a need, there is a Lion. And LCIF will be there to support Lions who are having a deep and lasting impact on their communities. If you would like to support future Lions projects, visit lionsclubs.org/donate.
Jamie Weber is the marketing content specialist at Lions Clubs International Foundation.