Letter to the Editor – Bonnie Paulin of Cornwall Ontario Not Happy With Hospital Care – March 29, 2011

I am writing to express my sheer horror at the state of our town’s health care system. My father was recently admitted to the Cornwall hospital. This 79 year old man has contributed 60 years of hard work and taxes to the community, during which he rarely fell ill or required any health care.


Recently he has become unable to walk due to back pain, a flare-up from a previously acquired back injury. After having been bedridden for two weeks (unable even to reach the bathroom to relieve himself), he was admitted to the hospital upon his third visit due to elevated blood INR levels.

He has been transferred from room to room several times during his stay because, he was told, other patients needed these rooms. I went to visit my father and was given his room number, only to find another man occupying the room. No staff member I asked knew where he was; it is extremely disturbing that a hospital could essentially lose a patient, not keeping track of where he had been moved. After searching frantically, I discovered that he had been transferred yet again, his new ‘room’ consisting of a corner in a hallway with a free-standing screen for privacy, a teacher’s bell on his bedside table and a blue garbage bag as his closet. Upon my arrival my father asked me to change him out of the hospital gown into his own clothes, as he was uncomfortable being seen by the constant flow of people passing through the hallway. Enclosed with this letter are photos of my father’s hospital room.

I must say that the hospital’s treatment of the elderly is appalling. To have worked and contributed to a community for several decades and to be disregarded as unimportant and a nuisance is intolerable, and a hospital stay the likes of my father’s is inexcusable.

Bonnie Paulin – Cornwall Ontario

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Scott BeckDaily Dish News




  1. Sorry to hear you are having to go through this Bonnie. Wishing your father a speedy recovery.

  2. It seems more & more of these stories are surfacing ! I still maintain that the Hospital Board, should be elected.

  3. For all you folks who vote Blue or Red, They are the people who have butchered our health care.

  4. Bill
    Do we not already have a board whose responsibility is to monitor hospital services? H1N1 or something like that.

    More committees would also tax a system already spending out of control. But form a government perspective it would be a form of job creation.

    Remember willie the health butchers are at the provincial level not federal. But it is also the system. Look at what Despatie is doing locally. She closes beds which provide revenue. With the levy’s they added in Ontario alone we should be in much better shape.

  5. Dear Pauline,
    My husband has been through that mill , I have had similar experience with his illness as you have had with your father.
    He was moved around a great deal , at one point no one knew where he was, they had him in a cupboard!
    The rooms were not very clean, dust bunnies playing tag under the bed. At one point I had to go to the linnen cart and get clean bedding, his bottom sheet was not clean, had not been changed for
    more than a week. There was a lot of old dried blood on it from blood tests that had happened the previous week. I found many of the staff rude and some quite obnoxious.
    My husband is 80.
    I had taken him to the hospital for symptoms of an impending stroke
    He was released around 8 in the evening, the next day at home he suffered a massive stroke.
    He was hospitalized seven months.
    Lost his memory of many things, could not speak, cannot make any decisions, lost 60 pounds, is a shell of a man, who does not know what day it is, or what month.
    So much for early warning signs and getting help….

  6. Aaudrey, Willie and Pauline
    Do either of you think money would fix that, or is is a poorly managed and operated system making it the fault of people working in the existing system?

  7. smee, put your right wing approach on the back burner and show some compassion for these folks

  8. Author

    Willie I’m not going to agree with Smee, but I do agree with the principle that simply pouring more money in is nothing more than a temporary solution that if anything hurts the situation by not focusing on the real issue.

    For example, last year the government chopped 25% from generic drug fees and ended at least one form of kickbacks to pharmacies. While there was much lamenting the reality is that we were paying out billions per year unnecessarily. Those dollars could be used on better care.

    I use a CPAP machine. Because the government allows suppliers to gouge the public we spend millions each year over paying for a product that I can buy with no favors or sale for 2/3rds less in the US, and that’s for the exact same item.

    No, we can’t just keep pumping money through our medical system to big drug companies and insurance firms. We need to rip our medical system down and run it the way it was intended; and stop wasting billions of Canadian tax payer dollars while Canadians suffer in hallways.

  9. willie how much compassion would you get by tossing money at the problem???
    money is inanimate and feels nothing ….people are the problem.

    Place a $100 bill beside a dust bunny and see what happens. The bunny remains but sure as shyte the $100 would be gone.

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