A hospital environment that promotes growth

A hospital environment that promotes growth

Quality of care, compassion and kindness of staff — these are some of the traits that people highlight about North York General Hospital. But what many may not realize is that the hospital also helps to nurture staff growth.

My journey of growth

When I joined in 2015, I worked part-time as an X-ray technologist and thoroughly enjoyed my work. Today I am a full-time member of staff and work in the Karen, Heather & Lynn Steinberg Breast Centre at the hospital.

I work with patients who come for breast cancer check-ups and treatment, and I do mammography. My role covers a wide spectrum of tasks, from diagnostics to performing biopsies, and preparing patients for surgery. It’s a very challenging role, as cancer patients can be vulnerable and must be treated with great care. Working at the Breast Centre has been very rewarding and an incredible learning experience for me.

Giving back to the community

I remember one patient story that has really stuck with me. The patient came for a mammogram and during the process, we spotted a very small area that looked cancerous. She went on to get it treated, and due to having spotted it early, the treatment was very effective. When the patient returned for a follow-up mammogram many months later, she couldn’t stop thanking me. She said that because we had noticed the cancerous area in her mammogram, it saved her life. It is experiences like these that make me feel like I am contributing to the community in my own small way.

Caring for patients through the pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic has brought about unexpected challenges every day. Patients are often worried about coming into the hospital for their check-ups and there are restrictions around family members being able to accompany patients as they come into the Breast Centre. It isn’t easy on us or on patients. But the one constant that has remained has been the quality of care that we provide. We also make sure we provide comfort and calm any nerves for patients who come in alone.

The family at work and at home

The health care team at the hospital is incredibly supportive. I cannot speak highly enough of the kindness of my colleagues and the spirit of teamwork that I see every day. We spend so much time working at the hospital, but for me, it almost feels like spending time with family.

It’s my two-and-a-half-year-old daughter who fills up my world when I’m not at work. Hiking with her, running around in the playground, dining out, which has now switched to ordering in, are my favourite family time activities. I will set aside my Staff Lottery jackpot for her education. The staff lottery is my way of contributing to the hospital that means so much to so many, and it has now contributed to my daughter’s future. I am so grateful.

— Stefania Butnar