Dies waiting on hospital bed

A Canadian who suffered a medical emergency while vacationing in Mexico has died waiting for a bed to open up.

Stuart Cline, 71, from London On, had a medical emergency in Mexico and waited for days to get a hospital bed closer to home. Not long after he was finally flown out of Mexico, he passed away.

“I did not know Stuart Cline, but he was a constituent in London West and I failed him,” Peggy Sattler, the NDP MPP for London West, wrote in a Facebook post. “He had a right to expect that our health care system would be there when he needed it most.”

Cline was vacationing in Puerto Vallarta when he suffered a burst blood vessel in his brain more than a week ago. According to Sattler, Cline had a heart condition that required blood thinners and a pacemaker.

Cline was taken to a Mexican hospital, with family members by his side, but there was no hospital bed available in or near London, Ont. for him to be transferred to, Sattler’s office said last week.

“The question that haunts me is whether Stuart would still be with his family if he had been transferred to Ontario last Saturday, when he was cleared for travel, instead of being forced to wait five days because of a shortage of hospital beds,” Sattler wrote in her Facebook post.

Sattler said that, rather than blaming Cline’s insurance company for failing to find a bed for him in Ontario, Premier Kathleen Wynne “must accept responsibility” for chronic hospital bed shortages in the province.

-with files from CTV

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