Mr. Campbell made a $1 million gift to the Central Washington Hospital Foundation from his personal account and from the “Carl and Betty Campbell Foundation of Caring Fund,” the foundation he established with his late wife Betty. Mr. Campbell is pictured (center) with former Central Washington Hospital President & CEO Jack Evans and Foundation Executive Director Abel Noah.
Confluence Health Foundation’s 24th Annual “Spirit of A.Z. Wells” will be held Friday, November 13 at the Wenatchee Convention Center Grand Ballroom at 6:00 p.m.
The “Spirit of A.Z. Wells” Award pays tribute to those who selflessly share their time, talent and treasure for the betterment of Confluence Health and our community.
Dr. Farrar has been unanimously selected as this year’s “Spirit of A.Z. Wells” honoree. He was selected for his consistent commitment to our community and his patients since he started his Wenatchee practice in 1983. In addition, he was on the University of Washington clinical faculty for several years, has served as president of the Washington State Orthopedic Association, has been a volunteer surgeon in Nepal and a Confluence Health Foundation Board of Trustee since 2010.
A passion of Dr. Farrar’s is the exoskeleton bionic therapy. This is a devise that helps people with lower extremity weakness, walk again. Proceeds from the evening will help establish a Financial Assistance Endowment for exoskeleton bionic therapy so anyone, regardless of their ability to pay, may have access to this cutting edge technology. Confluence Health is proud that we were the first facility in a four state region to provide this type of physical therapy to patients of North Central Washington.
Please click here to register.
Update August 19: We have a full field and registration is now closed.
Sponsorships and registrations are now being accepted for our annual golf tournament and fund raiser. Net proceeds from this year’s tournament will establish a Financial Assistance Endowment for Esko™ Exoskeleton therapy.
Rocky Shipes will be back again this year to share his ‘trick shots’ with us. This is a demonstration you don’t want to miss!
Golf play is a scramble format, so all can play. It’s a great time for everyone! Gather your foursome today and sign up here.
Since 1989, the Foundation has awarded more than $786,000 in scholarship funds. Confluence Health Foundation programs, such as scholarships and Helping Our Peers in Emergencies (H.O.P.E.) are made possible by our many generous donors/employees of CWH, WVH and CH. The Foundation is proud to announce that over $47,000 was recently granted to the following scholarship recipients.
Jean Wood Nursing Scholarship – Jenessa Marlow
The Jean Wood Scholarship was established through a gift from the Wood estate in 2002. Jean Wood was a nurse for over 30 years. Her career started in the Army Nurse Corps during World War II as a 2nd Lieutenant. After discharge, she continued her nursing career as a RN at St. Anthony’s Hospital and Rosewood Hospital and retired when Rosewood became Central Washington Hospital.
Margaret Weed Mentoring Scholarship – Michelle Welton
Originally established in 2003, the purpose of the Mentoring Scholarship is to encourage professional nursing development which ultimately translates into empowered practice and excellence in patient care. In 2006, the scholarship was renamed in memory of Margaret Weed, a teacher and Foundation Board member, who served as a mentor to many of her students.
Wenatchee Valley Street Rod Scholarship – Jessica Flores, Jessica Giles, Secret Simmons
Since 2001, the Wenatchee Valley Street Rods Club, a guild of the Foundation, has donated nearly $130,000 to the Hospital using proceeds from the Apple Run Car Show. The guild disbanded in 2013, but is still able to award scholarships from funds previously raised.
Dianne Kasnic Prinz – Yolanda Jimenez
This scholarship is given in memory of Dr. Prinz, a scientist and NASA researcher. This award was established in 2004 to assist a registered nurse enrolled in a BSN program.
Career Assistance – Denise Gyselinck
This scholarship was established in 2014, by Don and Tracey Kasnic, to give financial assistance to a current employee wanting to continue their education in a non-nursing healthcare field.
Confluence Health Foundation Employee Scholarship Recipients: Angelica Acuna, Edward Ariliano, Jessi Ayers, Karyn Browitt, Catherine Clift, Katherine Ferguson, Jessica Flores, Kai Folke, Juliana Garcia, Denise Gyselinck, Mylee Huber, Nicholas Jackson, Yolanda Jimenez, LaDora Kempff, Rosario Maas, Deborah Martin, Rebecca Mattson, Chelsea May, Jamie McElroy, Monica Montano, Caitlin Orange, Carl Polson, Karina Roberts, Jonathan Rodriguez Ortiz, Heather Scott, Secrett Simmons, Alison Stotko, Cheryl Tremlin, Jessica Vega, Dianne Wannschaff, Jessica Wilson
Certification Scholarhship Recipients: Michelle Broset, Mary Feldman, Josh Fulwiler, Jonathan Gleason, Jami Sprugasci, Cheryl Tremlin, Melissa VanWeerdhuizen
Front row (l-r): Jessica Vega, Karyn Browitt, Jessica Giles, Mylee Huber, Jenessa Marlow, Caitlin Orange.
Back row (l-r): Michelle Welton, Jessi Ayers, Yolanda Jimenez, Heather Schott, Carl Polson, Jaime McElroy, Kai Folke, Dianne Wannschaff, Karina Roberts, Johnny Rodriguez Ortiz, Ed Ariliano, Debby Martin.
Dr. Edward Farrar, recipient of 24th annual “Spirit of A.Z. Wells Award,”
leading the drive to make exoskeleton therapy available to all who can’t walk
By Jeanette Marantos for the Confluence Health Foundation
WENATCHEE—Edward Farrar has a gift for overcoming obstacles. He abandoned a football scholarship at Georgia Tech after just one year, so he could study medicine. He raised his sunken cabin cruiser in a Florida hurricane and then spent a year working construction to pay off his debt on the uninsured boat.
He went back to school newly motivated, working as a research assistant and waiter while graduating Phi Beta Kappa from the University of Florida in 1974. He entered medical school at Emory University and graduated Magna Cum Laude. His residency training at the University of Washington led him to a career as an orthopedic surgeon, and in 1983, he founded Wenatchee Orthopaedics with another orthopedic surgeon, Fred Deal. He remained on the clinical faculty at the University of Washington for several years, and from 2004-2006 served as the president of the Washington State Orthopedic Association. He climbed mountains all over the world and worked as a volunteer surgeon in Nepal. He was also an avid cyclist, and would regularly ride his bicycle up Number 2 Canyon on his way to work at Central Washington Hospital.
So when a distracted driver ran him over one October morning in 2008, leaving him paralyzed from the chest down, it took him less than a year to go back to work as a consulting physician, with a whole new perspective on orthopedic medicine as a paraplegic. Even though he almost died on a bicycle, he still bikes regularly with a recumbent handcycle—a kind of reclining bicycle that’s hand-propelled. He gets himself out of bed every day and drives himself to work.
Still, out of all those achievements, Farrar says one of his greatest moments came last spring, when he strapped on an Ekso™ Exoskeleton and, for the first time in six years, stood up and walked.
“The best way I can explain it is to ask you to sit in a chair and imagine that the only thing you can feel are your arms. Then imagine you want nothing more than to stand up and walk outside, but try and try as you might you cannot get your body to move, even though your mind and your heart are screaming, ‘Get up and walk!’ It’s an internal frustration you have to live with 24-7, that there is no hope you can ever again make that movement. Then you get in an exoskeleton. You lean forward, you stand up, and suddenly you’re 6 feet tall again and you can look at people eye to eye. It’s a dramatic difference in how you feel in the world,” he said.
“Even if it’s artificial, walking with a robotic device is still walking, and walking is a miracle. Walking has so many health benefits; even being able to walk short periods of time on a regular basis can make a huge difference in your life. Now we finally have a tool that can give paralyzed people some hope.”
Farrar will be recognized for his community contributions Nov. 13 during the Confluence Health Foundation’s 24th annual gala presentation of the Spirit of A.Z. Wells Award for Community Service. Tickets are available at the Foundation office, 665-6030.
All proceeds from the gala, and from the foundation’s annual Armada Golf Classic golf tournament this fall will go toward funding Farrar’s new goal: making exoskeleton therapy available to all eligible paralyzed people in the region, regardless of whether their physical therapy benefits have expired.
The physician-led Confluence Health didn’t need much persuading to bring the device to Wenatchee in 2014. Farrar demonstrated the exoskeleton in front of the executive board last June, and the equipment was in Wenatchee by September, making Confluence one of the first medical centers in the entire Northwest to provide exoskeleton physical therapy to paralyzed patients.
Farrar, a member of the Confluence Health Foundation board, helped the foundation raise $80,000 from the community to purchase the $150,000 device, but the Confluence board was so impressed with the exoskeleton’s potential, it decided to cover the rest of the cost itself. “This wasn’t a business decision or financial decision,” he said. “It was one of those times where physicians who care for people said, ‘This is the right thing to do, so we should do this.’”
Now Farrar is leading the charge to create an endowment with at least $150,000 that will be used to fund scholarships for patients whose physical therapy benefits have expired on Medicare or their health insurance, so they can continue getting exoskeleton therapy.
“We now know that getting a person who is paralyzed up and into a walking motion is one of the fastest ways to get the spinal cord and nerves to heal,” Farrar said. “It won’t cure me—my injury was too severe—but less than 10 percent of the people with spinal cord damage are injured as badly as I was. We’ve learned there’s more neural plasticity in the brain and spinal cord than we imagined, and for people with partial paralysis—from strokes, Parkinson’s, multiple sclerosis, and, of course, spinal cord injury—this kind of therapy can be almost miraculous.”
It’s not clear yet how much therapy is needed to kick-start damaged nerves into working again, but Farrar said he hopes Confluence Health can get involved in research looking into that very question, because getting an answer could help guide insurers and government officials in adjusting the limits for physical therapy coverage.
“Compared to all other health problems, treatment options for neurologic injury and disease are still pretty primitive, and the U.S. lags behind most of the developed world in this area of medicine,” Farrar said.
“The specifics of neurologic disorders do need to be understood more completely by both health care providers and politicians, no question, and nothing is real until it’s personal. Once you or a loved one have a neurologic disorder or disease, you realize that a physical therapy cap of two months isn’t enough. Neurological conditions aren’t like broken bones that heal in six weeks; they become lifelong disabilities for people. In America, 75 percent of people with spinal cord injury become obese because they have nothing to do but sit around all day and eat. Being able to get the benefits of exercise is huge.”
Farrar said he remembers several paraplegics he cared for whose bones became “osteoporotic”—porous and brittle. “They would have multiple fractures, or develop pressure sores that wouldn’t heal….if they’d had a chance to stand up and walk two times a week, they might have avoided those problems.”
Exercise was a regular part of Farrar’s life before his injury, and he’s done as much as he can to continue the practice since. He has a workout station in his house, and was able to get back to cycling within six months of his accident by using a recumbent handcycle. “I just wanted to be able to move and do something without a wheelchair,” he said. “I wouldn’t say it was courage; I’d say it was desire.”
But he couldn’t have done it alone, Farrar says. That’s one of the most important things he’s learned since he was paralyzed. “You really learn how important our connections are to others—friends, family, the people you work with—and how important it is to find something to look forward to on a day to day basis.”
Farrar has a long list of vital “connections”— the ongoing support of Biosports Physical Therapy, a group of friends who cycle with him every time he goes out on the Loop trail and the owners of Arlberg Sports, who make regular cycling possible by storing his bike for him in their shop, which is right next to the Riverwalk Crossing pedestrian bridge.
Storing a bike may seem like a little thing, he said, “but I can meet my friends, get on the bridge and ride around the Loop without ever having to deal with traffic. They not only do it for me, but for three other paraplegics who keep their handcycles there.”
Those kinds of connections make this valley a special place, he said.
“I’m not sure that would happen in other communities. When you have an injury like this, hope is the hardest thing to hold on to and the most important thing to keep. You end up putting your life back together in pieces, and I have been truly blessed to live in Wenatchee, because I have been able to put together a quality of life that would be almost impossible in other places.”
The exoskeleton recently made a debut to the community. Click here to read more.
This years’ tournament had the biggest participation ever! Many thanks goes out to those who participated, sponsored and donated. Because of your generous support, over $49,000 was raised to go toward our fund raising efforts to purchase an updated Infant and Child Security System for the Mother/Baby and Pediatrics Units at Central Washington Hospital.
Jim Wade has established the Wade Family Literacy Endowment at Confluence Health Central Washington Hospital and Clinics. The Endowment will provide the Baby’s First Book and Books for Young Readers. This program will ensure that every family with a newborn will have that first book to start reading together and building early literacy. Older children will also receive an age-appropriate book to have during their stay and to take home. The books will be distributed through Central’s Mother/Baby and Pediatric Units.
The $100,000 Endowment will ensure a program that has been in place since 1998 started by the Wenatchee Alumnae club of Pi Beta Phi will continue. The program was interrupted for a brief time during the tower construction.
The Endowment is a joint effort between the Wade family, North Central Regional Library, Wenatchee Pi Beta Phi Alumnae and Central Washington Hospital Foundation. All entities will work together to distribute over 1,600 books annually to newborns and pediatric patients. Currently, over 400 books have been prepared for distribution.
Angela Morris, NCRL Assistant Director, added “Jim’s generous gift to establish the Endowment is an extension of the creation of the Camille Wade Children’s room at Wenatchee Public Library. The Wade family is very committed to encouraging children to become lifelong readers and helping parents assist their children with their educational goals. Children and families have been enjoying the beautiful library space, attending programs and finding wonderful books to read since the opening of the new room in spring of 2013.”
Mike Irwin, from the Wenatchee World, has done a wonderful story on the Esko™ Bionic Suit that was demonstrated live on Tuesday, July 1. Please click here to read the article and here to see the video of Dr. Ed Farrar ‘walking.’
The Foundation is raising funds to bring this piece of equipment to the patients and communities of North Central Washington. If you would like to help us reach our goal, click here to donate now and make sure to note that this is for the ‘Walk Again’ fund.
The Foundation is continuing its mission to ensure the latest equipment, technology, programs and highest skill level for health care providers are prevalent in North Central Washington with our current spring appeal campaign.
This campaign is raising funds to update our “Infant and Child Security System” for the Mother/Baby and Pediatrics Units. The new security system will utilize the latest technology to ensure our patients’ safety and receive the best health care possible.
Fortunately, Central Washington Hospital (CWH) has never experienced the tragedy of an abducted infant or child and wants to prevent that from ever occurring. A state of the art “Infant and Child Security System,” using Radio Frequency Identification tags, WIFI network and a combination of alarms, locking doors and locking elevators, will greatly enhance security and safety for our families. The overall goal is to raise $158,000.
You can help make a difference by clicking here, or donation button above, which will take you to our secured donation page.