Bruno’s story: compassionate care during an unexpected illness

Brunos Story - North York General Foundation

Recently I celebrated Father’s Day with my dad Bruno, and I’m so grateful that he is once again in good health. He’s with me today because the outstanding front line team at North York General Hospital (NYGH) saved his life.

My father is a very active senior — vibrant and young-at-heart. Last summer he came down with a fever and felt unwell, which he thought might have been due to sun stroke from refinishing his deck. Naturally, my family and I were very concerned, not only because he was ill, but also because of the added risks of COVID-19.

Discovery and treatment of a serious health problem

My parents decided to drive to the Charlotte & Lewis Steinberg Emergency at NYGH to have my dad checked out. My family has a long history with the hospital and our experience has always been very positive. When my parents arrived, a helpful security guard escorted my father from the car to triage. Because of visitor restrictions at the time, we couldn’t be with him, but the emergency doctors and nurses kept me well informed of his condition by phone, which my family and I valued tremendously.

Dr. Phil Shin

His medical situation was more serious than we originally thought, and once stabilized in the Emergency Department, he was admitted as an inpatient for further care. In subsequent days, his health unexpectedly deteriorated, and he was quickly transferred to the Critical Care Unit under the care of Dr. Phil Shin, Chief of Medicine and Medical Director of Critical Care. Dr. Shin contacted my mother during the night to explain the gravity of my father’s situation. He and the rest of the Critical Care team worked tirelessly to keep my father alive and ensured his stay was as positive and comfortable as could be expected during COVID-19. For that, I’m so grateful.

Staying connected virtually

After many days in the hospital, my father thankfully started to recover. Having been away from home, he missed our family, and the COVID-19 protocols meant we couldn’t visit him. With the help of the staff, we were able to connect with my father through the Virtual Visiting Program on iPads funded by community donations. Seeing his family, especially his grandchildren, made a world of difference. This shows once again the lengths the NYGH team will go to ensure their patients are well cared for and thriving.

A special way to recognize my father’s care team

My family and I were so indebted to NYGH for my father’s exceptional care, that I wondered how to say thank you. We were overjoyed to make a donation to recognize Dr. Shin and the Critical Care team, my father’s cardiologist Dr. Lubelsky, and others through the Say Thanks Program. It was because of their care that he is back to enjoying his family.

With gratitude,

Sonia Depiero, grateful daughter