The Markham Stouffville Hospital (MSH) needs a new, hybrid operating room, and Craig McOuat, President and General Manager of McOuat Partnership, is supporting the funding by embarking on an adventure to Trek Everest!
In April 2018, Craig will depart for Kathmandu, Nepal with 20 MSH physicians, staff, and supporters who will provide free health clinic services for villagers still suffering from the 2015 earthquake.
“This is my first time to the Himalayas and my first time getting to heights exceeding 20,000 feet. I am not what you would call an experienced climber, but I am not too worried about any complications as I have a very experienced team with me, as well as a couple of dozen doctors,” says Craig. “If one was to stub their toe and ask if their is a Doctor (or someone with medical training) on the mountain, we would have 24 hands in the air!”
The 15-day trip will involve trekking up to the Everest Base Camp and summiting all 20,161 feet of Mount Lobuche (neighbouring Everest).
The event also celebrates the 65th anniversary of the first ascent of Everest by Sir Edmund Hillary. His son, Peter Hillary, will lead the expedition along with famous Canadian explorer Ben Webster who will be filming a documentary.
“The experience alone is so exciting,” adds Craig. “I believe that everyone secretly has a hidden desire to experience Mount Everest. But how many actually get to the Himalayas? And how many of those get to Base Camp and see the mountain in all its majesty? And how many of those actually get their feet on that mountain on the anniversary of it being first summited? And of those that do all of the above, how many actually get to experience this with a Hillary? Just a few of us. How special is that?”
The government can not supply enough funding for all the hospital equipment necessary to accommodate our communities, so initiatives like this are crucial to improving health services for residents.
“I am a firm believer in doing good in the world, and this is a unique opportunity to do some good at home in Markham, in the community I live, and also in Nepal, one of the poorest countries in the world,” Craig explains. “We will have three days of medical clinics in Kathmandu for the poor, as well as teaching assistants in local schools, too. But what we are trying to achieve at home is to raise funds for a much needed new hybrid operating room at Markham Stouffville Hospital, where I sit on the Foundation Board. It is a chance to lead by example, to help make this world a better place, and to test myself with one of the most challenging things I have done in my life.”
MSH requires an operating room equipped for fluoroscopy, which is a “surgical tool (that) uses X-rays to obtain real-time moving images and is essential for angiograms, angioplasties, urological and cardiac interventions and many other procedures,” according to the fundraising web page.
The new equipment and renovation of the operating room will increase the capacity for surgical procedures and decrease wait times.
To support Craig’s Trek Everest fundraising goal, donate here!