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Annual Vernon Jubilee Hospital fundraiser behind schedule

Watch: It's an annual ask, but this Christmas donations for the Vernon hospital are coming in more slowly than expected.

Vernon Jubilee Hospital has six new anesthesia machines.

They allow critically ill patients who are on ventilation to more easily undergo surgery, by making it possible to match the same sophisticated ventilation patients can receive in the ICU.

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However, the “light-a-bulb” fundraising campaign which is aiming to raise $275,000 to help pay for the anesthesia machines is behind schedule.

“Light-a-bulb is off to a bit of a slow start. We are at about $45,000 right now. It is a little bit behind where we were last year. We are thinking the postal strike is having an effect on people’s ability to get their donations in,” said Lisa Westermark, executive director of the Vernon Jubilee Hospital Foundation.

READ MORE: Ontario man arrested after car stolen in Winnipeg crashes into Vernon hospital

The hospital foundation is hoping the cheques are in the mail and points out donations can also be made online, by phone or in person at the hospital foundation’s office.

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The annual Christmas fundraiser is part of a larger $3.6-million fundraising project by the VJH Foundation aimed at equipping an additional operating room at Vernon Jubilee.

READ MORE: Daughter critical of VJH treatment speaks out after father’s death

“People are waiting a long time for surgery. Some of the folks are waiting for hips and knees for a year and longer. We want to get that wait time down to under 26 weeks,” said Westermark.

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