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UHN is currently experiencing COVID-19 outbreaks on several units at Toronto Western Hospital.
More information about UHN COVID-19 outbreaks »

Universal Masking at UHN

Masking for Patients, Visitors and Vendors

Everyone entering UHN is now required to wear a mask. Patients will need to wear a mask during appointments, outpatient treatment or while visiting UHN. This policy also applies to pre-approved companions and visitors, and vendors, suppliers and contractors.

COVID-19 may be spread by people who do not have any symptoms. This is why we are asking you to wear a mask.

What to expect:

  • Our entrance screening staff will ask you to wash your hands and then give you a mask. They will explain how to put it on properly. You will wash your hands again after putting on your mask. They will only give one mask per day.
  • If you are already wearing a mask, they will check to be sure it is effective. If it's not, they will give you a mask.
  • Make sure the mask is covering both your nose and mouth at all times.
  • If you need to remove it to eat or drink, clean your hands first and remove it carefully. Do not touch your face.
  • Continue to maintain physical distancing (2 metres) between you and others inside the hospital.
  • Always use clean hands when putting on or taking off your mask.

I have my own disposable or reusable mask or face covering. Can I wear this instead of a mask given to me by UHN?

If you wear your own mask to the hospital and want to wear it while at UHN, entrance screening staff will check it to be sure it is effective and meets certain standards to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Masks that have exhale vents or valves will not be approved. Although a vented mask may be more comfortable, it does not prevent your germs from spreading to others.

If you have a disposable mask, it must:

  • be new and clean (not worn before).
  • be worn properly according to the maker’s instructions. All attached ear loops, straps or ties should be used properly.
  • not have any tears, holes or vents.

If you have a reusable cloth mask or face covering, it must:

  • be freshly washed. You should be able to machine wash and dry your mask between each use without it changing shape or being damaged.
  • be comfortable and fit snugly against your face.
  • be made of multiple layers of fabric.
  • allow you to breathe easily.

We suggest you bring a plastic bag to place your reusable mask in, in the event that you need to remove it and use a mask provided by the hospital.

If you have questions or health concerns about wearing a mask, please let the entrance screening staff or your health care team know.

Frequently Asked Questions for Patients

When people come together, the risk of infection with COVID-19 increases. To lower the chances of COVID-19 for our patients and staff, we will be cancelling some clinic visits for patients who are currently well, and are coming to UHN for routine check-ups or other non-urgent reasons. These appointments will be rebooked for a later date.

Depending on the reason for your appointment, your health care team may offer you a "virtual" visit. This will only be offered as an option if it is safe to do so. This could be a phone call, or a video chat. Clinic staff may ask you what technology you have access to and are comfortable using. Please let them know if you have any concerns.

Surgeries will continue as planned for now. Surgeries that are needed to save a life will go ahead, but other surgeries may be cancelled in the near future. If you have any questions about an upcoming surgery please call your surgeon's office to speak with a member of the care team.

We are screening all patients and visitors before they come into the hospital buildings. There may be line-ups. Please come earlier than you normally do to be sure you have time for screening questions and to make your appointment on time.

When you come to the hospital, staff will ask you why you are at the hospital and if you have any of the above symptoms.

No. At this time, only patients with appointments are allowed into UHN hospitals, to minimize the risk of spreading COVID-19.

When you enter the hospital, you will be asked to sanitize your hands after answering the screening questions. Hand sanitizer is provided at the doors.

Please note, gloves are not a substitute for hand hygiene. If you are wearing gloves, you will be asked to remove your gloves and apply hand sanitizer.

Please do not come to the hospital for a clinic appointment, test or other procedure if you have any of the following symptoms:

  • Fever, chills or headache
  • New or worsening cough
  • Shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, sore throat or difficulty swallowing
  • Runny nose, or stuffy nose without another cause (e.g., allergies)
  • Nausea/vomiting, diarrhea, stomach pain
  • Decrease/loss of taste or smell
  • Unexplained fatigue, malaise, muscle aches
  • Eye pain or pink eye

Find a list of all our clinics, tests, and procedures »

If you have one or more of these symptoms, call your clinic. Talk to the staff about:

  • Whether you need to come to the hospital
  • Rescheduling your appointment
  • Any concerns you have with delays in your care

If your clinic tells you to come to the hospital, and you have any of these symptoms, you will be asked to wear a mask and use hand sanitizer. We will take you to your appointment, where we will talk about options for your care.

Visitors will be turned away if they show any symptoms during the screening process.

Yes. At this time, there is no change to our Service Animal policy. Please bring any documentation you have about your animal with you in case you are asked to show it during screening to enter the hospital. Emotional Support Animals will also be permitted at this time, in areas where it is safe to do so. Please note that other personal pets will not be permitted. .

For more details, including where Service Animals are and are not permitted, please read the AODA Customer Service Policy PDF Icon.

Virtual Visits at UHN

During a virtual visit you do not come to the hospital to meet in person. You speak with your care team using a regular telephone, smartphone or your computer.

We are using virtual visits more often at UHN to reduce how many people come to the hospital. This is to protect our patients, staff and the community from the spread of COVID-19. Virtual visits are not new. UHN and health care teams across Ontario have been using virtual visits for some time through the Ontario Telemedicine Network (OTN).

Your health care team talks to you about your current health status, any symptoms you are experiencing and your needs. If your care team feels that an in-person visit is needed instead of a virtual visit, they will discuss your options and next steps with you.

Your care team may call you to discuss changing your upcoming appointment to a virtual visit.

  • They will talk to you about options for virtual care. This may include offering a regular telephone call or a video call using a system called OTN.
  • They will give you instructions on how to prepare.
  • They will also ask for your verbal consent for the upcoming appointment.
  • They will let you know the day and time of your virtual visit and confirm they have your preferred contact information. The decision on which type of virtual visit you have will be made based on your care needs and the technology you and the clinic have access to.

Telephone visit

  • Your care team will call you on the phone at the scheduled time.
  • You and your care team talk about how you’re feeling, your questions and next steps in your care plan.

Video (audiovisual) visit using OTN

UHN uses a secure video conferencing tool provided by Ontario Telemedicine Network (OTN) for video calls. OTN is funded and fully supported by the Government of Ontario to enable people to receive care at home.

What to expect using OTN

  • Your care team calls you on your smartphone or computer using the OTN video system at the scheduled time.
  • You and your care team talk about how you’re feeling, your questions and next steps in your care plan.
  • If you have trouble with the video system, your care team will call your telephone number instead.

Is OTN safe and private?

  • OTN is secure and private (encrypted).
  • Personal health information discussed during the virtual visit is not stored or kept in any way by OTN.
  • If you agree to participate in a virtual visit, UHN will need to provide your name and email address to OTN. Your care team will schedule your virtual visit with OTN.
  • You get an email from do-not-reply-otninvite@otn.ca
    • Do not reply to the email or send the video conference link or appointment email to anyone.
  • This email contains your care provider’s name and the date and time of your virtual visit.
  • It will also have a link to access your appointment and instructions on using OTN.

Please call your care provider’s office if you have any questions regarding your OTN appointment or if you do not receive this email from OTN.

  • UHN may also send you appointment information and other general information by email or text, if you have consented to receive information in this way.
  • Please do not send emails for urgent symptoms, questions or in an emergency. If you have an urgent medical issue, please call 911 or visit an Emergency Department or Urgent Care Centre.
  • Some care areas may send you a follow-up survey after your appointment by email or text. This is to help us to improve the quality of care we deliver. They should let you know about this during your appointment, so check with them that they have your preferred contact details.
    • If you receive a link to a survey and are not sure if it is coming from your care team, please call them to check before clicking on any links.

Electronic communication, including virtual visits and email, may have some risk. Third parties may take over electronic communication and introduce malware, phishing scams, or other unauthorized access.

UHN is not responsible for the security of patients’ internet service providers, email domains, personal devices or personal computers. We suggest that you use your personal email when communicating about your health and not a work email address, as your employer may have the right to inspect your work email.

Use a secure internet connection. Do not use a public internet connection such as at the airport internet café, public library or other open area. Other people may be able to use the link to listen in on your appointment without you knowing.

For more information on how to protect yourself against security risks associated with electronic communication, read this article on UHN.ca: Don’t let a phishing attack reel you in.

Protecting your privacy

Your privacy is very important to us at UHN. We protect your privacy during virtual visits in the same way as we do during a clinic visit.

This means:

  • Only the people providing care to you will be present during your appointment.
  • Our discussion during the visit in your health record, just like an inperson appointment would be.

We suggest that you take similar steps to protect your own privacy. This means being aware of your surroundings and who may be able to overhear your virtual visit.

You can decline or withdraw your consent for virtual visits or communication using email or text, at any time by contacting your care provider. Please know that this may lead to delays in your care during this challenging time, as only urgent in-person appointments are being offered in our clinics right now.

Ontario Telemedicine Network
Website: https://otn.ca

UHN Privacy Office
Phone: 416 340 4800 ext. 6937

myUHN Patient Portal Support Team
Phone: 416 340 3777
Email: myuhn@uhn.ca

General Information about our Sites

Yes. Our Emergency Departments, located at TGH and TWH, continue to provide care to those with urgent needs. All patients will be screened for COVID-19 when they arrive, and will be isolated if needed.

Our health care teams are working hard to prevent the spread of infection. Please help by respecting rules around physical distancing, hand hygiene, letting them know about your symptoms and travel history, and by properly covering your cough or sneezes.

If you are having difficulty breathing or experiencing other severe symptoms, call 911 immediately. Advise them of your symptoms and any travel history.

If you have mild symptoms, do not come to the Emergency Department. Self-isolate and call your primary care provider, Telehealth Ontario, or use an online assessment tool to see if you need to be tested or how to access further care, if needed.

Hand hygiene is the best way to prevent the spread of infections.

Remember to wash your hands:

  • When entering or leaving the hospital and clinical areas
  • Before eating or drinking
  • After using the washroom
  • If your hands become visibly dirty

Please note, if you are coming to our sites for an appointment, you will be asked to sanitize your hands after answering the screening questions. Hand sanitizer is provided at the doors. Please note, gloves do not serve as a substitute for hand hygiene. If you are wearing gloves, you will be asked to remove your gloves and apply hand sanitizer.

Learn more

Yes, our outpatient pharmacies remain open.

Yes. Food courts will remain open for patients, their visitors and TeamUHN. Please pick up your food and do not sit in the food court.

In the spirit of social distancing, patients and visitors will not be able to use the UHN shuttle that travels between Toronto General Hospital and Toronto Western Hospital.

Public Health Resources and Updates

Toronto Public Health COVID-19 Hotline

If you have general questions about COVID-19 (coronavirus), or worry that you may have been exposed and aren’t sure what to do, please call the Toronto Public Health hotline. Information is available in multiple languages.

Phone: 416 338 7600
Hours*:

Monday to Friday: 8:30 am to 8:00 pm
Weekends: 10:00 am to 6:00 pm
After-hours: call 311 and ask for Toronto Public Health

*Hours subject to change. Check the City of Toronto’s COVID-19 webpage for up-to-date information.

Resources and updates from Public Health

COVID-19 Cases at UHN

Number of patients being cared for on an intensive care unit: 18
Number of patients being cared for on an inpatient unit: 28

Total number of COVID-19 cases at UHN hospitals: 46

Last Updated: May 31, 2020 (8:30 am)

UHN Toronto Western COVID-19 Assessment Centre

Location: 347 Bathurst St., on the northeast corner of Bathurst and Dundas St.

  • Before coming to the Assessment Centre, check the self-assessment tool at https://covid19toronto.ca or call TeleHealth Ontario at 1 866 797 0000.
  • Open 7 days a week, 12:00 pm – 8:00 pm

You do not need an appointment.

Hospital Entrances and Access Information

Princess Margaret Cancer Centre

  • University Avenue: Open Monday to Friday, 7:00 am – 6:00 pm. Badge access only after 6:00 pm and weekends.
  • Murray Street: Open all-hours, including weekends.
  • Mt. Sinai - PM connection: Open

Toronto Rehab

  • University Centre: Elm Street entrance will be open.
  • Other Toronto Rehab sites: One entrance will be open. 
  • Lakeside Centre: Closed to visitors
Toronto General

  • University Avenue: Staff access only. Card access after 11:00 pm. Patients with after-hours imaging appointments can buzz in.
  • Elizabeth Street: Open 6:00 am – 11:00 pm. Card access only after 11:00 pm.
  • Gerrard Street entrance: Open for dialysis patients only 6:00 am – 11:00 pm.
  • MaRS - TGH connection: Closed (including access to the Queen's Park TTC station)
  • Peter Munk Parking Garage:
    • 6:00 am – 11:00 pm, Monday to Friday: Patients and visitors must exit and enter through the pedestrian door to Gerrard Street and then enter the hospital from one of the main entrances.
    • When leaving, you will need to come back into the garage from Gerrard Street and drive out of the garage before 11:00 pm — the pedestrian door will be locked at 11:00 pm.
    • After 11:00 pm: Please use the Elizabeth Street parking garage.
Toronto Western

  • Leonard Street: Staff access only. Open from 7:00 am – 7:00 pm. Card access after-hours and weekends. Staff only on weekends.
  • Nassau Street: Monday to Friday from 6:00 am – 9:00 pm. Weekends from 7:00 am – 9:00 pm.
  • Bathurst Street: Monday to Friday from 6:00 am – 9:00 pm. Weekends from 7:00 am – 9:00 pm.
  • Krembil Discovery Tower at 60 Leonard: Open 6:00 am – 10:00 pm. After-hours access will not change.
  • TW - Krembil connection: Closed.

Successful Proposals for the COVID-19 Innovation Fund

A list of successful proposals that will help front line staff safely manage patients during the COVID-19 pandemic. This $3.25M initiative is supported by the Sinai Health System - University Health Network Academic Medical Organization, and is funded by the Government of Ontario.

List of Successful Proposals

Research Innovation Fund Details

The Science of COVID-19 Portal

The UHN Science of COVID-19 Portal provides trustworthy educational and clinical resources.

The volume of information – and misinformation – on this coronavirus is overwhelming and the UHN and Michener Library Network is collaborating with partners across our organization to build the Science of COVID-19 Portal. The Portal curates reliable, authoritative sources of information to facilitate knowledge mobilization and enable our institutions to deliver the best health care, provide the best education, and lead research to end this pandemic.

Resources are constantly being added to the Science of COVID-19 Portal. Some of the resources you will find include:

  • General epidemiology, virology and research resources.
  • Emerging Evidence: a place where you can ask questions on the science of COVID-19.
  • Resources aimed at clinicians needing to "upskill" to critical care or being redeployed to unfamiliar areas of practice.
  • Self-care aids to help you maintain wellness and resiliency during this pandemic.


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