(Seguin) -- Thanks to a recent donation to the Guadalupe Regional Medical Foundation (GRMF), Guadalupe Regional Medical Center (GRMC)is even better equipped to serve the victims of sexual abuse. In fact, unlike many other surrounding hospitals, GRMC has the services to not only help adult victims but children as well.
Technology for the hospital's S.A.N.E. (Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner) Program will soon see an upgrade following a $7,200 donation by members of the Knights of Columbus No. 3412 organization. The donation was made to the foundation, which then passed through that funding to the hospital so that it could be used for the SANE program.
Courtney Burgoon, GRMC ER charge nurse and SANE clinical coordinator, says the money will go toward entirely replacing its current piece of equipment.
"It's going to cover the cost of a new colposcope which is a huge piece of equipment that we use. We have been doing S.A.N.E. examines here at the hospital since the 90s. So we've been doing it for a while but the colposcope that we had is out of date. It wasn't taking adequate pictures anymore and the safety storage for the photos was out of date as well. So, we really needed to upgrade and get a new photo system," said Burgoon.
Hospital officials say the donation ensures exams are processed and properly coordinates with the Guadalupe County Children's Advocacy Center, Seguin Police Department, Guadalupe County Sheriff's Department, as well as the Department of Protective and Regulatory Services.
Burgoon says the upgrade in the equipment only advances what GRMC is able to do in providing services to area victims.
"We are not the only hospital that provides this service. San Antonio has 24/7 coverage for sexual assault victims but we are one of the only programs that offers pediatric and adult services whenever we have available nurses. There's other hospitals in San Marcos and New Braunfels that do have some sexual assault nurses. Some of them only will see adult victims though. They don't all do pediatrics. Some of them will only do chronic exams at times for pediatrics but we offer both. We can do chronic and acute exams for pediatrics and adults. We offer everything that they need. But we are working on growing the program. Right now, we only the one certified nurse. I have two nurses that are training with the goal of sending two more to training to hopefully provide that 24/7 coverage that is really needed," said Burgoon.
Grand Knight Mike Castillo says the organization which supports a number of charities throughout the year is honored to be able to fully support the S.A.N.E. Program.
"Normally any kind of programs that we do (support) pertains to kids, youth since sexual abuse -- there is a lot (of this) going on with the kids. It's just our way of giving back to the community of supporting this entire program so that when it's time for the abuser to go to court, they have all the information that they need," said Castillo.
Burgoon says GRMC is grateful to the KC's for its donation. She says it through these community partnerships that allow them to help even more people.
"We can't not thank them enough. It was just the most overwhelmingly feeling to know that we were going to be able to purchase the piece of equipment, have the computer to go along with it to be able to just provide better care for these patients. Our department isn't necessarily a money making department. We really provide a community service so to have that help with the funding to be able to provide that service is just amazing and we thank them so much," said Burgoon.