Vergennes Lions donate $2,000 to VARS

VERGENNES — At the last meeting of the Vergennes Lions Club, President Debbie Brace presented a check for $2,000 to the Vergennes Area Rescue Squad to help them acquire a Nitronox Field Unit for administering nitrous oxide for pain control. Tom Leeman talked about how this will replace, in large part, the need for using opioids for pain.
Nitrous oxide is an analgesic well suited for short scene times and rescue environments because the administration is by inhalation, and is used for short-term treatment of minor to moderate pain, and serves as a bridge to other pain management options. Administration of nitrous oxide provides significant reduction in pain and anxiety, and it doesn’t require an IV.
Leeman said that the unit costs about $3,750 plus another $2,250 for storage of the material. Normally, one canister would be used three to four times, but on long drives it could take two canisters. Having this unit will save the squad — and patients — money as well as reduce the need for addictive forms of pain control. Sara Rivers, the VARS chief, thanked the club for being the first donors toward this effort.
Meanwhile, Sara Audet of Addison County Home Health and Hospice was also at the meeting to talk about her agency’s efforts to help folks throughout Addison County remain in their homes as their health declines. Last year, workers put on over 731,000 miles helping care for patients, including 182 patients in Vergennes.
A few years back, Wayland’s Wish was started to help meet a wish of folks in hospice care, Audet explained. She said the funds donated helped fulfill last wishes of several folks. This included a desired last meal, a toy for a grandchild who was no longer going to have her grandmother around, gas to help get a daughter home to see her passing parent and Christmas lights to help brighten a home.
At the end of Audet’s comments, President Brace presented her with a check for $1,000 to continue to help meet final wishes.
It was announced that tickets for the Annual Lions Car Raffle would soon be available. Members were encouraged to sell their 50/50 Scholarship Tickets for a May drawing to help graduating seniors with scholarships. Members were also reminded to start looking for items for the Annual Lions’ Charity Auction in July.

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