Surgery Center of Oklahoma Blog

May 15, 2011

Hail Storm

Filed under: Uncategorized — surgerycenterok @ 2:00 pm

One year ago this weekend the horrific hail storm that hit Oklahoma destroyed the roof and much of the interior of our facility.  I made 3 phone calls when I first arrived at the surgery center to ask for help with the clean up.  Within an hour, forty (yes, forty) employees and their families were working very hard to deal with the mess (remember this was a Sunday night).  The floors were dry and the patient monitors, anesthesia machines, operating room equipment and medical records were covered (all done that night!) and spared any damage.  The skylights (completely destroyed by the hail) were covered with tarps that employees had brought from home.  With more rain in the forecast it was important to have a temporary roof installed so that the work inside the facility could begin.  Many thanks to Tim Schlenke and his crew from Metro Roofing (my apologies to you Tim if I misspelled your name) for their work late into that Sunday night.  Jeff Vanhoose and his foreman (Tiny…who is not Tiny but one of the best guys I’ve ever met) insured that the needed work got started and stayed on schedule.  No one working on the facility could believe how clean it was just one day after the storm.  Everything was removed from the building and placed in storage pods…by our staff.  Indeed, our staff set the tone I believe for all of the subcontractors that worked on the facility.  The work of the staff had just begun, however.  Moving the equipment back into the facility involved cleaning and sterilizing…well…everything.  Detailed inventories of damaged soft goods were critical.  Ready for the unbelievable part?  Remember, everything out of the building, the damage repaired, everything cleaned (and sterilized) and replaced and operational again in two weeks.  This quick turn around would never have been possible without our staff’s work.  And it wasn’t just the long hours they put in.  There was a natural cooperation and coordination of effort that caused many projects and difficulties to be dealt with right then.  I can’t remember how many times someone would say “well, we took care of that issue in the waiting room.”  ”What issue,” I would say. You know…then the description of something about which I was not aware.  The staff had handled it….like they owned the place.  I remember telling my partner Steve Lantier that if he and I had accomplished anything we had been successful in instilling ownership of the facility in the staff.  There are so many to thank for their contributions to this effort I hesitate for fear of leaving someone out.  My constant sidekick throughout this ordeal, our head nurse Marilyn Robertson, deserves special mention, though.

You should know that the same dedication and pride of workmanship that was exhibited by our staff after the storm is shown every day in the operation of our facility.  My hat is off to the finest group of people I have ever worked with.

G. Keith Smith, M.D.

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