Recently, Oakville, Ontario, senior Denis Landry went to see his ophthalmologist, Dr. Mark Mandell in Mississauga. Things did not go well.
Denis has a serious medical condition that prevents him from wearing a mask. Denis says his medical exemption is sanctioned by both the federal and provincial governments and is mandated by the City of Mississauga.
Yet, he was denied service by Dr. Mandell.
Indeed, Denis tried to comply by masking up just to get the examination over with.
“I was forced to wear the mask for an eye examination which brought improper results as the mask fogged up my glasses and I could not read the letters properly. I complained to the person administering the test but my complaint fell on deaf ears. While I was in the testing facility, Dr. Mandell reared his head in twice demanding I wear my mask — which I was... I then sat down in an area with no one in reach, far beyond distancing requirements (at least 10 feet), and removed my mask so I could breath properly.
“I was told by the other office staff that the mask was only mandatory while being with a doctor of which I was fully compliant. Dr Mandell again stuck his head out of a treatment room in a condescending, arrogant fashion threatening me to not serve me if I did not wear the mask. I reiterated my medical condition and he told me he did not want to hear about it in front of the other patients.”
In any event, Denis says there was no sense remaining in the office in an uncomfortable state while being berated. So he left and eventually found another ophthalmologist that caters to his needs.
But in the meantime, Denis is left pondering a few things. First, why wouldn’t a medical professional accept a medical exemption? And secondly, Denis finds it perversely ironic that there were so many people jammed into the waiting room that social distancing was impossible to maintain. Why was this deemed ok?
(For the record, we did reach out to Dr. Mandell to get his side of the story but he declined to comment.)