October 16, 2018

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People often ask what a Respiratory Therapist is, so here you go. A respiratory therapist or “RT” provides many services to patients. The services may be outpatient which include performing pulmonary function testing to see how well ones lung function is. A Pulmonary function test is the only true way to diagnose COPD. RT’s also provide pulmonary rehabilitation services to help patients with lung diseases to help them be able to perform daily activities more easily through exercise training, education, smoking cessation, and breathing exercises. RT’s can also perform diagnostic sleep studies to help diagnose and treat sleep apnea.

In the inpatient setting RT’s have many roles and see patients in all areas of the hospital. RT’s provide bronchodilator therapy via aerosol treatments, provide mucous clearing adjuncts, and provide education and smoking cessation. We are also able to assess our patients and treat them with certain therapies according to their respiratory state. Arterial blood gases are a type of lab that respiratory draws. This is different from a normal blood draw due to the fact that it is drawn from an artery and not a vein. An artery carries oxygenated blood and gives us insight to the patient’s respiratory and metabolic state.

Respiratory therapists treat patients of all ages ranging from newborn to end of life. RT’s also play a key role when it comes to life saving measures. They manage and run all ventilators while the patient requires support. RT’s can also perform intubations. Once ready patients can be “weaned” from the ventilator and the breathing tube removed to allow for a patient to breathe on their own.

MMHD has a full Respiratory Therapy Department. Visit our website for more details.

Evelee Nelson Honored

By Alex Colvin
Mountain Echo reporter

More than 100 people came to the Veterans Hall in Burney Saturday evening October 13 for the 8th Annual Chair-ity Plus auction to raise funds for Mayers Memorial Intermountain Hospice.

Evalee Nelson began the event in 2011.

“It was just a crazy idea,” she said, “but a lot of people liked it. Many of my artist friends have pitched in and done some wonderful things.”

The original idea was for talented artists to paint old chairs that were then auctioned off with the proceeds going to benefit the Hospice program. In 2014, the auction was expanded to include other items that might be enjoyed while sitting in a chair. For instance, a person might enjoy wearing jewelry while sitting in a chair. Or a person can sit in a chair and enjoy a painting or other works of art. Other items auctioned have included lamps, tables, yard art, pillows, etc.

Nelson has continued tto organize the event every year since its inception. This year the event included a bidding auction, a silent auction, a raffle, and the “infinity chair” auction.

The doors opened at 6 p.m. for people to view the items. Attendees paid a $10 cover charge to attend and enjoyed scrumptious appetizers and desserts. The auction began at 7 p.m. The Burney High S-Club assisted during the meal and the auction.

Keith Earnest, Mayer’s Memorial Chief Clinical Officer, acted as Emcee. Craig Harrington was the live auctioneer. Scout Leader George Chapman and Scout Stephen Welch carried each item around the room for bidders to view.

The items included a wide variety of restored and decorated vintage furniture, art work, clothing, and awards such as golf for four plus carts, and a trip to the Shakespeare Festival in Ashland.

The climax of the auction came as Fred Gideon and his wife Nancy bid $375 for an oak desk donated by Jim Friday. The Gideons plan to give the desk to their granddaughter who lives in Redding.

After all thirty items had been auctioned, the event closed with the “infinity chair auction.” This gives those who wish to donate a chance to buy the chair and then donate it back to be auctioned again until someone finally keeps the chair. Mysteriously, the chair continues to be returned to be auctioned off again at subsequent Chair-ity Affairs.

At the end of the event, Earnest asked Evalee Nelson to come forward and thanked her for her eight years of service organizing Chair-ity Plus. Each year the event has raised thousands of dollars to support the hospice program.

Mayers Memorial Intermountain Hospice provides compassionate care for people and their families who are facing life-limiting illnesses. As well as caring for patients in their homes, they also provide in-patient care in cases when pain and symptom control cannot be managed at home. In addition, they provide respite for the family or primary caregiver and bereavement support for family and loved ones for 13 months after the death of the patient.

Funds raised from the Chair-ity auction and other community fundraisers such as the NorCal Gypsies Car Show and the annual Hosp

ice dinner pay for patients’ medication, oxygen, staff education, bed rentals, and other needs so that patients don’t have any out-of-pocket expenses. Hospice Manager Mary Ranquist said, “This is one of the funnest events of the year. We appreciate the hard work of Evalee and others who help put on the event as well as all of our attendees.”