Alison met Dr. Fahima Osman in October 2015 with the devastating news of a breast cancer diagnosis. From that moment onward, Alison credits Dr. Osman – a surgeon at Toronto’s North York General Hospital– with never making her feel like a statistic. Having a listening ear and true advocate helped Alison bravely square off against a radical mastectomy, and win. When Dr. Osman called confirming end of treatment, a funny thing happened to Alison. She found she wasn’t just happy for herself – she was glad she could share the celebration with someone she had come to trust.Read more
Natasha had just graduated high school when her life changed in an instant. A near-fatal car crash caused severe brain trauma, and sent her into a coma for months. When her condition stabilized, Natasha was transferred to Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital to begin rehabilitation. That’s where her family met Dr. Ladha, a Developmental Pediatrician. Not only did Dr. Ladha help Natasha’s parents navigate their emotional journey, she became Natasha’s helping hand, trusted expert, and advocate. Dr. Ladha has not only helped Natasha rehabilitate her speech, mobility and spirit; she has become her safe space.Read more
When Robbin met Dr. Schaman in the 1990s, he was moving towards heart disease. After a triple bypass, he signed up for Dr. Schaman’s Ontario Aerobic Centre – a cost-controlled exercise facility designed for cardiac rehabilitation and disease reversal. Over the next few years, Robbin came to admire Dr. Schaman’s creativity, willingness to educate his patients, and total engagement with his calling. He also learned that Dr. Schaman – ever the inventor – had created a special harmonica and an online music program specifically designed to replenish lung capacity lost to age. Now, Robbin doesn’t just live more in harmony with his heart. He plays the harmonica in harmony with the doctor whose passion for preventative medicine has made healthcare fun.Read more
When Keith came to Canada from Scotland over 40 years ago, his wife was pregnant and they needed a doctor. In time, Dr. Butchey’s honesty and ability to stay on top of his patients’ care made him wanted by two more patients: Keith’s parents. And the relationship didn’t end there. As the decades rolled on, Dr. Butchey saw the growth of Keith’s children, the sad passing of his parents, and – yes, the eventual moment where Keith’s children had children of their own. Keith says that Dr. Butchey has seen anything a person can of another person’s family – the ups, the downs, the good news and the bad. It truly is a relationship four generations in the making.Read more
Dr. Alix Young and Gail’s relationship began 34 years ago, when Gail was thinking about having a baby. Since that time, Dr. Young has stood by the family though a series of life moments – her young daughter’s brave (and successful) battle with cancer, the passing of her husband, and the complicated prognosis of an autoimmune disease. For decades, Gail has been grateful for Dr. Young’s willingness to respect her intelligence, and work with her to get to the bottom of any medical mystery efficiently and confidently. Dr. Young knows everything about Gail’s family, because she’s practically part of it. When Dr. Young retires after a long and illustrious career, Gail admits that it feels less like changing doctors, and more like watching your best friend move away.Read more
When you live in a remote northern place like Kenora, Ontario, access to the right care can be challenging. No one knows that better than Kay, especially since she met Dr. Clay Hammett. When Kay had to have an emergency C-section while having her first child, Dr. Hammett’s personalized approach to her care helped and impressed her. Equal parts advocate and personal physician, Dr. Hammett has even been known to pay house calls over long weekends to ensure Kay won’t have to travel hours to the nearest ER. Dr. Hammett has become a central figure in all aspects of the family’s healthcare, and provided strong medical advocacy when it was needed the most. Kay, in turn, takes care of Clay’s family in her capacity as a teacher to his children. She isn’t just a patient to Dr. Hammett, she is a member of his community.Read more
The day Aunika came into the world, she was already a medical mystery. After a stay in NICU, initial tests revealed that she wasn’t just immune deficient – she had no immune system whatsoever. Extensive testing unearthed the cause: Aunika was absent a Thymus gland, that compromised her body’s ability to train T-cells. It’s at this point the universe put Dr. Ryan Smith in the family’s path. The family credits Dr. Smith with normalizing an emotionally difficult time for them. He became their positive voice and passionate advocate, taking it upon him to petition the Ministry of Health to fund the rare Thymus tissue transplant that would come to save their infant’s life. With the help of Dr. Smith, the family was able to recently celebrate their baby girl’s first miraculous birthday.Read more
Meet Dr Darren Cargill from Windsor. Dr Cargill provides care and support to palliative care patients in the community, helping patients realize their dreams and live their lives on their terms.
Meet Dr. Atilio Costa-Vitali. He helps patients with heart disease manage their symptoms from the comfort of their own homes. Watch how he puts his #patientsfirst.
Meet Jennifer Brasch. She treats patients with addiction and mental health disorders, helping bring hope and light back into their lives. #PatientsFirst.
Meet Dr. Stephen Kosar. He puts #patientsfirst by providing vision care to those who need it most in Ear Falls and Kenora, Ontario.
Meet Dr. Jeffrey Turnbull from Ottawa, Ontario. Dr. Turnbull works with Ottawa’s most vulnerable population to address the impacts of social inequity on health.
This is Dr. Doris Mitchell. Three years ago she moved back to her hometown of Chapleau, Ontario, in order to provide health care care to the people in her community. Watch how she puts #patientsfirst.
Meet Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital’s Dr. Melanie Penner. Through diagnosis, Dr. Penner opens doors for patients with autism and their families.
Spotlight on Health provides patients and stakeholders with valuable health information. It is distributed monthly and features profiles of doctors, health tips and information, and news about OMA health policy and promotion initiatives.
Stay connected for health tips and profiles of Ontario’s doctors by subscribing to our electronic newsletter.
Spotlight on Health 2017
Ontario’s doctors are committed to having the healthiest patients. Part of that commitment includes providing you with information about how to live a healthy life – on everything from water safety for kids to end of life care and planning. You will find various downloadable resources categorized by life stage below. Regardless of whether you are looking for information for yourself or a loved one, Ontario’s doctors are dedicated to making a difference in your life and community.