A commitment to patient diversity through philanthropy

Toronto (May 12, 2003) - As one of the key groups of front line workers, nurses play a paramount role in the delivery of exemplary patient care, research and education at University Health Network. Going above and beyond the call of duty each and every day, nursing staff ensure that our three hospitals, Toronto General Hospital, Toronto Western and Princess Margaret Hospital, provide patients with the best care.

UHN has demonstrated its' commitment to nursing through a number of initiatives but most recently through the creation of Canada's first Clinical Nurse Specialist in Culturally Sensitive Patient Centered Care.

"Nursing staff play a pivotal role in caring for our patients. If they can be better informed about the needs of our diverse population, they can lead the organization in setting the standards for delivering exemplary patient care," said Sepali Guruge who is conducting a survey of health professionals at UHN to understand their perception, attitude, and knowledge of diversity practices in providing exemplary patient care. "The findings of this study will be used to implement programs and initiatives to help educate healthcare professionals about the diverse needs of an ever-changing population."

"Through the work of Sepali and her team, we can learn a great deal about how to provide the best patient care in a multi-cultural city like Toronto," said Dr. Mary Ferguson-Paré, Vice President, Professional Affairs and Chief Nurse Executive, UHN. "By supporting this kind of research in nursing, we can ensure that the programs and initiatives implemented can be shared not only with others in the nursing profession but also other healthcare professionals and organizations, to improve our delivery of culturally sensitive patient centered care."

UHN's current $400 million fundraising campaign, Together We Make Life Better, has identified key priorities for nursing. To date, donors have given an unprecedented $5 million designated to support nursing research, education and professional development. RBC Financial Group donated $2.5 million along with $1.5 million from University of Toronto to create two endowed Chairs in Nursing. Another $1 million was given by an anonymous donor to establish the Annie Fund – a fund to be used to support professional development for nurses in the areas of pain management, nurse-patient communication and new technologies. Sepali's study is one initiative currently being funded through the new Annie Fund as well as through a research grant received from the Nursing Research Interest Group of Registered Nurses Association of Ontario.

About University Health Network

University Health Network draws on the combined expertise of our three leading hospitals to make success stories happen every day. Over 10,000 healthcare professionals at Toronto General Hospital, Toronto Western Hospital and Princess Margaret Hospital share innovative approaches, knowledge and resources. We attract some of the most brilliant professionals in the world. We invest more than $100 million annually in research. We train over 3,500 future healthcare professionals each year. UHN and its partner Foundations, Toronto General & Western Hospital Foundation, the Princess Margaret Hospital Foundation and the Arthritis & Autoimmunity Research Centre Foundation, have recently embarked on a $400 million fund raising campaign. Together We Make Life Better.

Media Contact

Phone: 416 340 4636
Email: UHN.News@uhn.ca

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