Family Medicine Matters Blog

The OCFP Blog discusses current topics and invites members to share their perspectives and ideas, and engage in a dialogue.

Rallying to Save Lives

February 2018 - Family physicians across the province demonstrate daily the skill and commitment needed to deliver high-quality care to their patients. Working across a wide spectrum of settings - primary care practices, emergency rooms, long-term care facilities, and more -  family physicians are equipped with a breadth of skills to meet the healthcare needs in their communities.

All these skills came together during events in early February 2018 at Collingwood General and Marine Hospital (CGMH). 

In the aftermath of a horrific crash that saw eight badly injured patients rushed to the hospital's ER, the inspiring response of the town's physician community has earned the respect of many. In this letter to his colleagues, the CGMH's chief of staff, Dr. Michael Lisi, expresses his heartfelt admiration and appreciation.

Here is his powerful recap of events, highlighting collective effort of hospital staff, physicians and EMS, and the inspiring role of family physicians.


Dear physicians

During the afternoon of Friday Feb 2, 2018, six children were among eight people injured after a minivan collided with a bus.  The head-on collision occurred on Highway 26 near Wasaga Beach.

All eight injured were in the minivan and were in critical condition. The minivan passengers included two adults, two four-year-olds, one eight-year-old, two 10-year-olds and a 15-year-old.

A CODE ORANGE (mass casualty alert) was called at CGMH when the 8 trauma patients were brought into the Emergency Department within a short time span.

Messaging is going out to our inter-professional team members through our CEO outlining the great role that they played.  

CGMH had a phone call come in from a family member of the children and adults you treated. She was in tears and wanted to thank you all for your great job. The staff at SickKids told them if not for your great job they would have lost their whole family. She was in tears she was so grateful.

I received a personal message for the chief medical officer at SickKids Hospital.  ‘I was in our command centre last night for our code orange activation. On behalf of SickKids (and the families involved) thanks and kudos to your team. You did a phenomenal job of resuscitating and stabilizing all those kids. My colleagues in the ICU, emerg, OR and the rest of our code orange team all had high praise for the work that you did - thank you!’

I want to personally send a message out to all physicians to state how humbled and proud [I am] of what I witnessed.

Our physician community is truly special.  We are all uniquely connected to CGMH and a dedication to this community was demonstrated today.

Physicians from within the hospital, from their offices, and from their homes dropped what they were doing to come in and rally behind their community hospital.

They assisted in the resuscitations, they helped see other patients in the ER see & treat, they reduced dislocated shoulders on patients in the waiting room, they up-staffed the afterhours clinic, they consoled family members, they made phone calls to coordinate with orange/tertiary centers/other community partners, they made difficult decisions about triage and transport, they distributed blood, they picked up a ventilator from Orangeville while they were passing through on the way back home, they stood watch over intubated children awaiting transfer. And much, much, more!!!

Thank you all for being dedicated, compassionate, skilled and engaged. I am truly honoured to be working with you all.



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