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A grieving widow says it “broke her heart” to witness Victoria’s hospital delays firsthand after she was forced to wait in a hallway for hours with her dying husband. 

Widow Janice Rowe said more needed to be done to fix Victoria’s plagued health system.

“I tell you, our health system, we can be ashamed of it,” she said. 

Widow, Janice Rowe said more needed to be done to fix Victoria’s plagued health system. (Nine)

Her 82-year-old husband Rob died on Sunday with lung cancer. 

Barely a week earlier he was brought to Box Hill Hospital where he laid on a gurney for six hours waiting to be assessed for palliative care. 

“There was a sea of people and faces,” she said.

“It was like a football crowd. There were people sitting in the rain under a tent. It’s no good saying it’s fixed. It isn’t fixed.”

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Eleven ambulances were ramped outside Box Hill Hospital this morning.

In similar conditions, patients were even seen queuing in the car park this week outside Sunshine’s Emergency Department. 

Victorian Ambulance Union secretary Danny Hill said the system was under pressure.

“The aged care issue has predated COVID, the mental health issue has predated COVID, all of those things have a flow on effect to ambulance ramping and ambulance resourcing,” he said.

Ambulances lined up outside Sunshine Hospital in Melbourne earlier this year. (Jason South)

“Really, what they should be looking at is the past two or three decades of under-investment in our health system.”

Ambulance Victoria has been declaring a code orange two or three times a week and it did again last night.

Every day, more than a thousand health care workers are calling in sick. 

For Rowe, she hoped more could be done to assist sick Victorians.

“We are extremely lucky to be seen that night but people that I passed in the hospital sitting in the emergency room, standing outside, they were not lucky and they were waiting for hours without being seen,” she said.

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