An operating room smoke evacuator and a mammography unit are two pieces of medical equipment being removed from soon-to-be closed Mesa General Hospital and donated to help impoverished patients in the Congo and Brazil.
In addition, a number of hospital beds and other equipment at the northwest Mesa hospital will be given without charge to Project C.U.R.E. - Commission on Urgent Relief and Equipment.
"The evacuator will be used to remove smoke created during an electrical operation," said Brooke Watson, operations director for Project C.U.R.E, a Denver-based agency providing medical supplies and equipment to more than 100 countries.
The beds and other items will be distributed to nations other than the Congo and Brazil, said Watson at the agency's office in Tempe.
"These donations mean hope, health and life for people in developing countries," said Michael Medoro, executive director of Project C.U.R.E.
"The value of a donation like this cannot be measured in dollars - it means surgeries with anesthesia and not having to reuse things like gloves or syringes."
The property that houses the 126-bed Mesa General Hospital is owned by Sierra Land Group and leased by Iasis Healthcare, a Franklin, Tenn., headquartered owner and operator of medium-sized acute-care hospitals in growing metropolitan areas such as the East Valley.
Iasis in March announced its plansto close the hospital on May 31. On Mesa Drive north of University Drive, Mesa General opened in 1965 and has about 380 employees.
The hospital remains open and patients who remain hospitalized on May 31 will either be discharged if appropriate or transferred to other facilities.
Since announcing the closing, some equipment at the Mesa hospital has already been transferred to other Iasis facilities, said Tomi Galin, vice president of marketing.
"However, some equipment is not needed at other Iasis facilities so we've decided to donate it to Project C.U.R.E," she said, adding Iasis has worked with Project C.U.R.E. for many years and that the equipment donated by Mesa General is valued at hundreds of thousands of dollars.
"This helps us reach people outside of the communities in our hospital service areas," said Mark Pierce, vice president of operations for Iasis.