For the last 9 days, our family has had a very direct experience with our local medical system and it occurred to me, that many people considering a move into the area may want to know more about the local conditions for health care.
We have a very wide range of services that includes expanding and new medical centres, labs, a new family health network, walk-in clinics, specialists and a full range of natural health practioners such as chiropractors, acupuncturists, naturopaths and more.
The South Georgian Bay area is serviced by a small 30 bed hospital in Meaford and by the larger 72 bed, Collingwood General and Marine Hospital; the latter spot where we’ve sort of camped out of late.
Last Tuesday, without any warning signs whatsoever, my mother went into congestive heart failure. My mom suffered a serious stroke almost five years ago and resides with us.
The ambulance arrived within less than 5 minutes after our 911 call and within 15 minutes, she was being treated by two ER doctors who admitted her in critical condition. A team of nurses and respiratory technicians were assembled and for the next 24 hours, she was monitored and worked on literally by the minute with her every need addressed. The next day, she moved to a medical floor and since then, a co-ordinated and caring team performed what seemed like miracles bringing my Mom back to us. Everyone worked together and most of the time, they made us feel as though my mother was the most important person in the place. Interestingly, I heard other families express similar views.
Now I’m not saying out hospital is perfect and in fact, they are not. None are. I do think there is an element of luck involved whenever you set foot into the over-burdened hospital system. We happen to have a doctor who is part of an excellent team and we had incredible, experienced nurses. I know some people, in fact lots of people, who have not had positive outcomes and in my heart, I can only hope that things have gotten better over the years. Regardless, our experience has been great and I’m happy to say, she’s now home.
The Collingwood hospital was established in 1887 as an 8 bed facility. Today, it is a modern institution with a full range of services including a dialysis unit, mental health centre, diabetes clinic, surgical unit and a full-time emergency unit. We have a mammography department, a CT scanner and all the equipment you might not expect to find in a smaller community like ours. The hospital foundation has had great success attracting significant donors over time and, there is a troupe of over 200 amazing volunteers on board. (My favourite has to be the huggable front desk greeter who sounds EXACTLY like Mrs. Doubtfire!)
For those who really want to analyze the good and bad, the Fraser Institute issues Hospital Report Cards. I would note that the last results are already about 4 or 5 years old and I think the scores would be even better today.
Our friends have been remarkable every step of the way and it’s hard to know how to thank each one but you know who you are and what you’ve done.
One last comment. On top of everything, it’s a really, really busy time in my real estate practice right now and being away could have been horrid however, every other agent I’ve been dealing with and every client we’re working with has been amazingly patient, kind and understanding. Hugely, my friend and co-worker Chris, has been a Godsend. From the bottom of my heart Chris, thanks. You are one in a million.
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