Cornwall Ontario – A sound that has never been heard before at the Cornwall Community Hospital was heard for the first time last Friday, July 15, when Lillian Coleman was the first to ring the chemo bell in newly renovated Chemotherapy Unit. The chemo bell is rung at the end of a patient’s chemotherapy treatment session and is usually a sign of hope for the other patients who are witnesses.
“I never completed my first round of treatments in Ottawa but I finished this round and couldn’t be more excited to ring the bell for the first time,” Lillian says. Diagnosed with lung cancer, Lillian has completed 18 treatments at Cornwall Hospital’s chemotherapy unit. The bell was donated by Marcel and Denise Lalande, donors to the Cornwall Hospital Foundation and Denise has been diagnosed with cancer herself. “I’m so pleased! The first of many rings for that bell! It’s nice to see her journey here complete. Ringing the bell is a symbol of hope but also has the intention to honour those who do not have that same opportunity,” Mrs. Lalande exclaims.
Cornwall Hospital Chemotherapy Unit opened in February of 2016 and has space for 7 patients to receive chemo at one time. This is possible by partnering with the Regional Cancer Centre at the Ottawa Hospital which is part of Cancer Care Ontario. Over $400 000 were raised by the Cornwall Hospital Foundation to purchase the necessary equipment for the chemotherapy unit.