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  • Writer's pictureSamantha Beattie

Health-care system is 'broken,' Niagara woman says after dad dies suddenly in emergency room

C John Zammit, 88, died in a Welland, Ont., emergency department after experiencing a brief illness

Samantha Beattie, Ethan Lang · CBC News · Posted: Jun 16, 2024 4:00 AM EDT | Last Updated: 9 hours ago· CBC News · Posted: Jun 16, 2024 4:00 AM EDT | Last Updated: 9 hours ago

Ann-Marie Zammit and her father C John Zammit. Ann-Marie says her father's death last month at Niagara Health Welland Hospital was avoidable, but the hospital lacked resources and staff. (Submitted by Ann-Marie Zammit)

As her father laid sick on on a gurney in a Niagara-area emergency room, Ann-Marie Zammit reassured him he'd recover. 

The medical staff at the Welland, Ont., hospital had told her despite an infection, and being in the emergency department for days, C John didn't have a fever, his vitals were stable and they'd be conducting more tests the next morning, Zammit told CBC Hamilton in an interview. 

She had reason to be hopeful. Before his illness, CJohn, 88, lived independently and was his happy, healthy and quirky self, she said. 

But that night at the hospital, C John insisted he wasn't going to survive the night.

"He told me his final wishes and I'm like, 'Dad, we're not going to need this because you are going to pull through,'" said Zammit. 

The next morning, June 1, Zammit  got a call from the hospital. Her dad had died. 


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