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Mala Sharma-Singh

Etobicoke General Hospital Making an Impact

Mala Sharma-Singh came to the Emergency Department (ED) at Etobicoke General Hospital with abdominal pain that felt familiar and frightening. “I’d had a bowel obstruction before and knew the feeling. I could feel the pain in my intestines, like something was going to erupt.”

Emergency Physician Dr. Getachew Mazengia was on duty that day. “When he saw me, he rushed me in to Diagnostic Imaging. They saw my intestines were horribly twisted and I had immediate surgery,” said Mala. “If it wasn’t for Dr. Mazengia, I wouldn’t be talking to you today. I believe he’s an angel in my life.”

Patients like Mala have received first-class emergency care at Etobicoke General for more than 45 years. Over the decades, the community grew, patient volumes increased and pressure on the ED became extreme. The department, originally built to handle 33,000 patients per year, was treating more than 85,000. Despite the incredible demand, Etobicoke General became one of the top performing EDs in Ontario. In fact, Etobicoke General patients saw a physician faster than at any peer hospital in the province. For this achievement, the ED was awarded the Central West LHIN Quality Award.

Today, Etobicoke is served by a much larger ED that anchors the hospital’s new patient tower, which opened in June 2019. Among the many features of the new ED is a dedicated satellite diagnostic imaging area for immediate 24/7 access to scans and a dedicated mental health area, which is projected to see more than 1,000 patients a year. “The Emergency Department is a beacon of light for everyone in the community,” says Dr. Sameer D’Souza, Etobicoke General Hospital Emergency Department Site Chief.

“Funds raised help equip this special place, so we can provide excellent treatment and continue to be a place of comfort for those who need it the most.”

With more than 136,000 visits last year, Brampton Civic Hospital — Osler’s other acute care hospital — is one of the busiest single-site emergency departments in Canada. But multi-disciplinary teamwork, compassion and an innovative new patient-centred scheduling system have substantially reduced the time for a patient to see a physician, bringing the ED from 58th to 10th in the province—the biggest improvement of any Emergency Department between 2014 and 2018.

Brampton Civic was the first hospital in Ontario to implement double overnight shift coverage seven days a week. Walk through the ED today and you’ll see more doctors and nurses providing emergency care, dedicated mental health zones and a Medical Assessment Unit to help prevent gridlock. Together, these services provide care to patients sooner while freeing beds in emergency.

“As the country’s busiest emergency department, it’s imperative that Brampton Civic has the resources to service a high number of patients,” says Dr. Oscar Karbi, Corporate Chief of Emergency Services.

Approximately 30% of Emergency Department visits to Brampton Civic and Etobicoke General are non-life threatening cases that could be more effectively and efficiently treated outside of an acute care hospital setting. For these types of illnesses and injuries, the Urgent Care Centre (UCC) at Peel Memorial Centre for Integrated Health and Wellness is open seven days a week.

100% of the equipment within our hospitals is funded by the community. Learn more about making a donation in honour of an Osler caregiver here.