Colorectal cancer patients receiving on-going care and support

May 8, 2020

COVID-19 has changed how hospitals are delivering care to patients, but at North York General Hospital (NYGH) the Colorectal Cancer Program team hasn’t let the current pandemic stand in the way of staying closely connected to patients. 

Although some surgeries have been postponed, urgent cancer surgeries are still taking place at North York General. Colorectal cancer surgeons are prioritizing urgent cases based on several factors including patients who are experiencing very serious symptoms such as bowel obstruction and severe anemia. Daily team meetings and weekly virtual case conferences bring together different specialists to review individual cancer cases and determine which patients need to undergo surgery as the health care system grapples with COVID-19. 

Patients are also being continuously monitored by our surgeons and Michelle Wong, Patient Navigator, for colorectal cancer patients. Despite the impact COVID-19 has had on hospitals, Michelle and our surgeons are providing ongoing care and re-assurance through telephone and virtual visits. 

Michelle’s Tips and advice during COVID-19

  • You are not alone, and the care team is here for you.
  • Contact Michelle if your symptoms are getting worse (for example abdominal pain, nausea and vomiting, or signs of bowel obstruction). 
  • Depending on your symptoms, you may be advised to go to the NYGH emergency department. Please do not delay coming to the hospital. 
  • The emergency department and hospital are safe for patients to receive care. Learn more about how we are protecting patients.
  • Newly diagnosed patients and those who will be scheduled for surgery should keep active, eat healthy, and monitor for regular bowel movements. 
  • Patients who have had surgery should also remain active, eat healthy, monitor incision and bowel movements.
  • Contact Michelle Wong, Colorectal Cancer Patient Navigator by Phone: 416-756-6444 ext. 4409 or email: if you have questions or concerns.