Toronto man asked to fix hospital backlog as wife awaits procedure – Toronto |

a Toronto The man, known for his skating fundraiser for Alzheimer’s research, is calling on all levels of government to fix the surgical backlog that has kept his wife in the hospital for nearly a month waiting for a procedure.

Steve McNeil And his wife Tina Grazos-McNeil was watching TV on Canada Day when Tina said she was not feeling well. McNeill said his wife had a stroke and collapsed.

“Her right arm and right leg started moving like I’ve never seen anything and she fell to the floor,” he said.

In a hospital room the next day, he was told that Grazos-McNeil had a brain tumor and needed a biopsy to determine next steps.

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Humber River Hospital, where Grazos-McNeil was admitted, has not been able to conduct the procedure. Sunnybrook Hospital, but the couple have been told repeatedly that scheduled procedures have been canceled due to lack of space.

“Every day the staff calls Sunnybrook to ask about the bed and it seems the bed is never available,” McNeil said. “We’re here to spin our wheels until we get that biopsy done, and I’m watching my wife deteriorate.”

Tina Grazos-McNeil has been waiting at the hospital for a brain biopsy since fall on Canada Day.

Presented by Steve McNeil

After waiting nearly a month on his wife’s side, McNeil filed a petition for Premier Doug Ford and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, urging them to come together and fix health care.

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Hospitals continue to face severe staffing and capacity strains, long after the worst COVID-19 waves of the winter.

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In a memo obtained Monday by Global News, the chief of surgery at Sunnybrook Hospital warned of a potential need to cancel the surgery and that only “life or limb” procedures would be deemed necessary.

Dr. Avery Nathens also said that he had spoken to neighboring hospitals about transferring patients there, only to be told they were facing similar limitations.

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An interview request from Global News on hospital tensions with Health Minister Sylvia Jones was denied. Instead a spokesman for the ministry outlined a number of steps the Ford government announced months ago to ease the strain on health care, including a March plan to recruit new workers while retaining existing members.

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A Sunnybrook spokesperson told Global News in an email that it has been able to avoid having to cancel the surgery and that Grazos-McNeil’s procedure is scheduled for Tuesday.

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McNeil was unaware of that development until Global News compared his wife’s process to winning the lottery. With the couple’s 33rd anniversary approaching, he wants to start planning what will happen next so this is the only celebration he has to organize from the hospital room.

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