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Tomball Regional Health Foundation continues supporting community with recent grant to Lone Star College

Lone Star College announced, Oct. 6, that the Tomball Regional Health Foundation awarded the Lone Star College Foundation grants worth $244,696 to help Lone Star College-Tomball’s nursing and lifePATH programs.

LSC-Tomball president Lee Ann Nutt said the college has a longstanding relationship with the Tomball Regional Health Foundation.

“They have been supportive of our programs and our college for many years, we have a great track record with them. …That’s allowed us to maintain this relationship of trust and support,” Nutt said. “Because of that relationship, trust and respect between us, we’ve been able to partner together quite a bit, I’m very grateful for that.”

The grant is technically one award but was split into two different parts, according to Nutt, with $244,696 going toward funding for additional lifePATH staffing and $101,839 helping provide more nursing equipment.

Tomball Hospital Authority CEO and THRF board treasurer Lynn LeBouef said the latest donation puts the foundation over $2 million worth of donations to LSC-Tomball in the last eight years.

“We’re pretty proud of that, been able to assist them on needs and haven’t had to raise tax dollars to provide that care,” LeBouef said.

Nutt said the college wouldn’t be able to purchase the necessary equipment without the foundation’s help.

“Health care equipment is very expensive and while we could purchase some, what they’ve allowed us to do is to equip our programs with the best equipment possible for our students,” Nutt said.

Nutt said the college needed additional options for nursing students to use health care training equipment amid COVID. More than half of the funding went to the purchase of four adult, full-body clinical nursing skills simulators, surgical technology supplies and infusion pumps.

“This equipment will simulate working on a patient because with COVID our students don’t have as much or any access to clinical sites,” Nutt said. “This equipment allows us to fill in that gap a little bit and to be able to still give that clinical experience in a simulated environment. …We can’t do all the clinical hours that way but having that additional equipment really helps solve the problem for us, so we appreciate that.”

Serving the community

The latest grant to Lone Star College is just one of many initiatives that the foundation is doing to help the community.

Tomball Regional Health Foundation Chief Administrative Officer Marilyn Kinyo said the foundation’s mission is to provide funding to nonprofits within their service territory for health care and education needs.

The foundation’s service area consists of 15 zip codes throughout northwest Harris including Tomball, Magnolia, Spring, southern Montgomery and Waller county.

“One issue is that people will call us within our service area but they’re helping folks in other areas outside our service area, other countries. …It has to be within our service area,” Kinyo said.


‘My Experience With Fibroids Is Why I’m Supporting Kamala Harris’

When I was in my late twenties, I decided that I was going to donate my eggs. I had learned about egg donation through a friend whose aunt was going through the IVF process, and I thought it was a wonderful way to help a couple who was in need.

At the time I wasn’t 100 percent sure that I wasn’t going to have children, but I was already leaning toward no. So I researched the egg donation process and decided to go through with it in order to aid a couple who had that yearning that I didn’t have. But while preparing to undergo the process, the doctor retrieving the eggs made a discovery: I had fibroids growing inside of my uterus.

The doctor told me not to worry about them for the time being, but that eventually I might have to get them removed, and so at the time I didn’t think they were a big deal. After all, at that point I had never experienced any symptoms from having them. (In fact, most women with fibroids never experience any symptoms and require no treatment.)

Though my mom dealt with uterine fibroids herself (she had surgery to remove hers when I was younger, but we never really talked about it), my knowledge about the condition was very limited. I didn’t know that you are more at risk of developing fibroids if you have a family member who also has them. I also didn’t know that fibroids are more common and severe in African American women than those of other ethnicities.

A few years later, I started experiencing exhaustion and heavy periods.

Though I’m now a Pilates instructor, at the time I was a restaurant manager working 12-hour shifts. I was experiencing exhaustion, heavy periods, and just an overall feeling of heaviness. I looked bloated, and if I touched my belly it literally felt hard. I wondered if maybe the symptoms I was experiencing were because of my long shifts, but deep down I knew I had to go visit a doctor.

When I went to the doctor, I discovered I had about eight or nine fibroids and that my uterus was the size of someone who was about three months pregnant. The fibroids had also caused me to become anemic, which is what I suspect was causing my exhaustion at the time.

In 2013, I scheduled the surgery to have them removed, and when I went in, what was supposed to be about a 90-minute surgery turned into a three-hour surgery and two days in the hospital.

When the doctors went in to remove the fibroids, they discovered that there were more fibroids than my initial scans had picked up. They tried to remove as many as they could, but I lost a lot of blood and had to get a blood transfusion.

In the end, the doctors told me they couldn’t get to all of them, especially the ones that were embedded very deep in my uterus,