Good morning, TeamUHN!

It is a pleasure to connect with you across care, research, and education through this weekly CEO update – all in service of A Healthier World.

Key reminders and updates

  • Submit questions here or enter #UHNCOVID-19x51 on
    You must include your full name for you question to be accepted. Including your full name helps support transparency and collegiality at UHN.
  • Virtual Open Forum on COVID-19 this week – Tuesday, November 9 (please note earlier time: 11:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.).
    • Note: This month's forum will feature an update on Synapse. Staff from across UHN will soon need to spend more time preparing to learn and use the Epic system. Questions about staffing, backfill, and scheduling for the Synapse projects are welcome on Slido.
  • Join us on Thursday, November 11 for UHN's Virtual Ceremony to commemorate Remembrance Day 2021. Members of TeamUHN will receive a calendar invite this week with all details for this year's ceremony. "In Flanders Fields" will be read via overhead announcement across UHN sites followed by a virtual ceremony held via livestream on Youtube at 11:00 a.m
  • UHN starts offering third dose appointments to staff at all five partner hospitals. The first 6,000 appointment booking links were sent last Friday November 5, with another 6,000 links sent on Saturday, November 6. Vaccine appointments will be accommodated at both the MaRS and Michener clinics starting on November 8. The clinics are expected to run for at least three weeks and we will evaluate the demand as we get closer to the end of November. Booking emails were sent first to staff who are furthest from their second dose – meaning they received their second dose in January through to February 11. The second round of emails sent Saturday, were for those who received a second dose mostly in February, March and April. Individual emails to book appointments will continue until all healthcare workers who had their second dose before June 30 have received a booking email. This link can only be used once and should not be shared.
  • Nominate your colleagues for UHN's 2021 Local Impact Awards: The nomination categories for the Local Impact Awards are again aligned with UHN's Strategic Priorities. Submit your nomination by Nov. 30 using this SurveyMonkey form.
  • UHN's Annual Flu Campaign is well underway and had a very successful first week. As of November 2, 3,870 members of TeaumUHN have received their flu shot at UHN and are now better protected this flu season. Let's keep going!
    • Book an individual flu vaccine appointment at Health Services here Editor's Note: Link no longer available]. Note: booking is only accessible using the Chrome browser.
    • Managers/Leaders at TG, PM, TW and TR can still book a flu cart to be stationed in their units/area for 2 hours. There is a minimum requirement of 10 staff to be vaccinated when booking these carts. Note: bookings will only be done on-site. Booking information was provided to managers in a separate communication.
    • You can also get a free flu shot from: your primary care provider, participating pharmacies, or some public health units. If you get your flu shot from outside UHN, please upload your proof of vaccination to
    • For questions about booking an appointment, call& 416-979-4441. Thank you for keeping yourself, TeamUHN, and patients healthy this flu season.

What happened at the Executive COVID-19 IMS Table

In response to COVID-19, UHN activated its Executive COVID-19 IMS (Incident Management System) table. Membership includes our Executive Leadership Forum and other members of COVID-19 work streams. The group meets on Tuesdays and Thursdays. This is a snapshot of the discussion.

Third Doses for TeamUHN

  • Background: UHN's Vaccine Team has been planning for the vaccination of TeamUHN and staff from our five partner hospitals (UHN, Sinai Health, Women's College, SickKids, Toronto Grace) for the last few weeks in order to stand up vaccination clinics as soon as the Ministry of Health announced the eligibility of healthcare workers, which they did last Wednesday, November 3.
  • Who presented? Emily Musing (Vice President, Clinical; Chief Patient Safety Officer)
  • What do I need to know? Thanks to much advance work, UHN is immediately able to run two clinics – one at MaRS and one at the Michener Institute of Education – for at least three weeks in order to expedite third doses to all TeamUHN members who received their second dose before June 30 as well as staff from our peer-collaborative hospitals. These clinics are not open to the general public. A third dose of the COVID-19 vaccine is not mandatory, but UHN encourages all staff to get a third dose if they are eligible since this will provide further protection upon exposure to COVID and decrease transmission of COVID to other vulnerable populations (in hospital and at home).

Capacity Update

  • Background: There is a very slight increase to the seven-day average of COVID-19 cases across the regional health system but hospitalizations and ICU admissions have plateaued. Current volumes and capacity issues at UHN are largely due to the demand of all healthcare services, coupled with decreased staffing numbers. These volumes are mainly driven by the fact that so much care was delayed by the pandemic. This situation is being experienced at all GTA hospitals.
  • Who presented? Marnie Escaf (Vice President, Clinical)
  • What do I need to know? Pressures on the system continue across all hospitals. We are actively recruiting new staff, and are appreciative of the teamwork and efforts that all staff are making to serve our patients during this time.

What happened at the Executive Leadership Forum meeting

UHN's Executive Leadership Forum (ELF) represents a broad range of voices and skill sets from across the organization and provides direction and oversight in service of patients, TeamUHN and our vision of A Healthier World. See the full membership on The last ELF meeting was held on November 4, 2021.

Finance Update

  • Background and why this was brought to ELF: The year to date clinical activity results and financial planning update was brought to ELF as well as information regarding the future path of the Supply Chain Transformation, which will be presented to the Finance and Audit Committee on November 9, for awareness and input.
  • Who presented? Darlene Dasent (Vice President, Chief Financial Officer), Kelly Enair (Deputy Chief Financial Officer), and Ivan Lara (Senior Director of Finance, Clinical Programs)
  • What do I need to know? As part of the financial planning process, a list of prioritized requests for budget increases from hospital operations was vetted and presented as a recommendation by MLC/COG to ELF for approval. Investments in the emergency department, Health Services, IPAC, and security services budgets were approved.

UHN Space Policy

  • Background and why this was brought to ELF: UHN's FM-PRO team is responsible for managing space allocation in collaboration with program Vice Presidents. FM-PRO introduced the first UHN wide comprehensive Space Policy to ensure that we can optimize the use of space as a corporate resource. This is particularly relevant given that many staff now work in a hybrid format of being onsite and through remote work.
  • Who presented? Ian McDermott (Senior Director, Planning & Integration) and Ron Swail (Vice President, FM-PRO)
  • What do I need to know? The proposed updates to the Space Policy indicates that any major space changes, greater than 1000 sq ft, will be escalated to ELF through our Capital Committee, and that any new space created through redevelopment projects will accommodate a variety of uses as we look to share space as much as is feasible. ELF approved the proposed policy, which will soon be posted to the intranet, with the caveat that it be revisited in a few months should any adjustments need to be made as a result of the new remote work model.

Closing notes

UHN has been named the No. 1 research commercialization institution in Canada for the second year running, according to the latest Association of University Technology Managers (AUTM) North American Annual Licensing Survey. UHN leads the sector in Canada, and ranks eighth among the top-10 research commercialization hospitals in North America. At UHN, we nurture our most promising discoveries to maximize health impact globally and elevate Canada as a world destination for life science commercialization. Read the UHN News story here.

Techna is celebrating its 10th anniversary this week. Since its inception, Techna's expertise in engineering, software development, project management and regulatory requirements has been instrumental in developing innovative technologies to the point where they can be integrated into clinical care. Some of the team's major successes include Surgility, Telemonitoring, Augmented Reality, The Virtual Care Management System (VCMS), the Surgical Wait Information Management System (SWIMS), Molecular Imaging Pipeline with CanProbe and QIPCM, and the recent drone delivery of organs for transplantation. Read this article in UHN News to learn how Techna has been accelerating the adoption of innovative solutions into clinical practice& over the past 10 years.

Congratulations to our colleagues at Toronto Rehab's Bickle Centre, for winning the 2021 Toronto Star Reader's Choice Awards, in the category of Best Nursing Home/Long Term Care Centre. It's rewarding to see the team recognized for their multi-level care model, including rehabilitation and the complex continuing care of some of our most vulnerable patients, and to know nominations came from the individuals, friends, and families we support makes this award even more meaningful.

Last week, I attended a memorial service to celebrate the life of the late Honourable Premier William G. Davis. The ceremony, which was held at Roy Thomson Hall, was a moving tribute to a man who contributed so much to the Province of Ontario and Canada. It was clear from the many tributes to Mr. Davis that decency, civility, and a deep sense of commitment to public service were the hallmarks of his life, and that his time in office made this province a better place to live and work.


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Have a good week,


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