In recognition of Kevin’s love of music and art, we contacted our local Art Gallery to arrange for an endowment fund to be used to reward new and emerging artists through a juried competition. The details have yet to be finalized but a general overview can be found at http://www.orilliamuseum.org/. Scroll down and you will find a brief overview on this fund. Receipts will be issued and are tax deductible.
Throughout Kevin’s journey with cancer over and over it struck me that the system was not being utilized properly. Millions of dollars are raised through donations, fundraisers, government funding and yet the chemo suite is used Monday to Friday, 9 to 5. Machinery, facilities, medicines are administered during regular business hours. It frustrated me that in order to cut costs and save money on staffing, millions upon millions of dollars of equipment lays dormant. It’s the bookkeeping you see. The upfront costs don’t factor into the bottom line administration costs and so when the time comes to save a buck usually some program is cut, hours are shortened and a perceived costs savings is achieved. But this is at a very human price. Cancer does not take time off, it’s not a Monday to Friday type of thing.
So many people have the need for these services and yet, because the government won’t fund adequate staff to administer the technology, the machines are utilized less than 25% of the hours in a week (8 hrs x 5 days = 40 hours; 24 hrs x 7 days = 168 hours; 40 divided by 168 is 23.8%). Increasing the use and administration of any machinery in the hospital, be it an MRI, CT, etc., would mean more jobs, would decrease the cost per use of the technology; it would result in increased billings to the health care system but potentially would reduce long term health costs through earlier detection/treatment. There’s so many pros associated with responsible, expanded and enhanced use of existing services and technology.
Convoluted though my reasoning may be it was why we elected to direct any donations for Kevin elsewhere. Donations are so routinely directed to the Cancer Society and with the best of intent – but somehow accountability for the usage of these monies is lacking. Instead, we contacted our local Gallery to discuss an endowment that could be used to further and encourage artistic expression at any age. Kevin would have loved it.