The Van Wert County Courthouse

Sunday, Jul. 14, 2024

Writer wants wellness center open

To the editor:

Many Van Wert residents are not aware that the Gaylord Leslie Wellness Center has remained closed since the pandemic. We have been told that they wanted to keep everyone safe, that Governor DeWine closed these facilities, and that the physical therapy was in need of the room. Since I have needed to use the physical therapy facilities, I see firsthand that the room is not used by this group. Yes, they may use the conference room, but the machines are just sitting there, idle.

The governor’s ban has been lifted. There have been many excuses as to why the wellness center has not opened. Why can the wellness center in St. Marys, which is connected with the hospital, be open when ours cannot? Take our temperatures, schedule and restrict the number of people allowed in at one time, have sanitizer available throughout the facility, follow social distancing guidelines — these restrictions could be done by employees of the facility. 

Yes, there are two other facilities that are available in Van Wert — Total Fitness and the YMCA. However, these two gyms are basically for the person who is physically fit, even though they offer Silver Sneakers.  With the older population of Van Wert, there are many who need to use equipment that is geared for those who need to keep moving. There are those who have physical handicaps that came to the wellness center because they felt safe and had supervision to assist them. What is happening to these people — they have probably stopped exercising.  

Have all the board members been in the wellness center to see what is being offered to the members? I hope they all have made a journey over to the center. How can you vote on keeping it closed when you don’t know what the facility offers? Many of the former members of the wellness center enjoy walking. The weather is turning cold and there sits a marvelous walking track — unused.  

Medical specialists state that “without exercise the heart and lungs won’t function efficiently. And your joints will be stiff and easily injured. Inactivity is as much of a health risk as smoking! Exercise helps prevent diseases. Our bodies were meant to move — they actually crave exercise.” Also, studies show that exercise helps with decreasing depression and anxiety.

Quoting from Van Wert Health-Home/Facebook, it states “Van Wert County Hospital remains committed to the region’s heathcare needs for generations to come. Van Wert County Hospital is committed to today, focused on tomorrow.” Think about this: Without taking care of our physical health, especially those mature adults, there won’t be much of a tomorrow for them!

Fellow Van Wert area residents: Many of you are upset about the wellness center remaining closed. Let the power of your written word be heard. Open the health center!

Linda Stanley
a concerned former wellness client
Van Wert

POSTED: 10/29/20 at 10:42 pm. FILED UNDER: Letters to the Editor