Cox Medical Center South has been chosen as the site for the first Mid-America Transplant Gift of Life Family Room for families waiting through the donation process.
The private room, located in a section of the intensive care waiting area on the ground floor at Cox South, was dedicated in honor of Bob Bezanson, former CoxHealth president and CEO, during a special ribbon cutting ceremony.
Bezanson, a former Mid-America Transplant board member for 30 years, was a strong advocate for organ and tissue donation during his time at CoxHealth.
“I must say that in my professional life I have been absolutely blessed to be part of two great organizations,” said Bezanson. “I would like to thank Mid-America Transplant and the leadership of CoxHealth for this honor. To me, this is an incredibly humbling experience and I thank you very much.”
The new Gift of Life Family Room is the first of its kind in Mid-America Transplant’s 84 county service area in Missouri, Illinois and Arkansas. It will provide families who have made the decision for organ donation with a private, quiet place to gather with caregivers, family and friends.
“Unfortunately we take care of patients who do succumb to injuries from trauma or for medical reasons, and to have this private room where families can decompress is important,” says Dr. Timothy Woods, CoxHealth trauma medical director and Mid-America Transplant board member. “We hope and pray that we don’t use this room very often, but at the same time we know it’s available when needed.”
Dave Coble, a donor family member, attended the event, and visited with staff who had cared for his son Gage who died at 15, and ultimately became an organ donor. Coble said the family room will be another way that CoxHealth can take care of families who go through the donation experience.
“Any time we can give comfort to a family in their time of need is going over and above expectations for families,” said Coble.
Families will be given a security code to use the room during their time at Cox South. The space has a table, couches and a small kitchen area.
“We are happy to partner with Mid-America Transplant to provide this space for our donor families,” said CoxHealth Senior Vice President, Chief Hospital Officer Ron Prenger. “We are especially proud to name this room in honor of Bob Bezanson who left a lasting legacy of donation advocacy for us to follow.”