Observerships/Authorized Guests FAQ


The Observerships Program will no longer be issuing refunds after 4 months from the scheduled start date of a cancelled observership. Please contact if you have any questions.

What to do if I feel unwell before or during my observership at UHN?

In order to protect everyone at UHN, you cannot come to UHN to observe If are not feeling well including any of the following symptoms:

  • A fever
  • Chills
  • Unexplained headache
  • Eye pain or pink eye
  • Decrease or loss of sense of taste or smell
  • A runny or stuffy nose, without another cause (such as allergies)
  • A sore throat, difficulty swallowing
  • Difficulty breathing, shortness of breath
  • New or worsening cough
  • Nausea/vomiting, diarrhea or stomach pain

If you have any of these symptoms or are feeling unwell, DO NOT come to UHN. Tell your UHN sponsor that you will not be coming in and contact the Observerships Office at UHN.

If you are at UHN and develop any symptoms: Inform your UHN sponsor right away and you should leave the building immediately.

What to do if I test positive for COVID?

If you have tested positive for COVID-19 you are not permitted to return to UHN for 10 days after testing positive.

If you are negative for COVID-19 you are not permitted back on site until all symptoms are resolved for a minimum of 48 hours.

What is a Sponsor?

All Observers/Authorized Guests require a UHN Sponsor. The Sponsor is someone affiliated with UHN who is willing to take responsibility for the Observers/Authorized Guest observer objectives, behaviour and orientation to the organization. Sponsors can be clinical or surgical staff that provide learning opportunities in their respective fields.

How to request a Sponsor?

IIt is the observer's responsibility to connect with a sponsor in their program of interest and then proceed with the application process. If you would like to pursue an observership at UHN but do not have a sponsor, please send a brief description of your objectives and an updated Curriculum Vitae/Resume to

We will do our best to help facilitate a potential connection for you. Unfortunately, we cannot guarantee that a connection will be made.

How can I contact the UHN Observership Coordinator?r


Who is the UHN Signing Authority?

The Signing Authority is the Senior Manager, Director or Chief to the Sponsor that will authenticate the Observership. The Signing Authority's signature is required on the Observation/Authorized Guest Agreement.

How do I acquire signatures from my Sponsor Signing Authority if I am not from Toronto?

Print the forms and complete your sections in full and send the forms that require these signatures by email to your Sponsor. They will sign the form and email it back to you in order to submit your completed application package to the Observerships/Authorized Guest email

What is the difference between an Elective Student and an External Observer/Authorized Guest?

A medical elective student must be registered at the University of Toronto and is on clinical rotation at UHN. All clinical learners who are at UHN must be registered as such (e.g., as a student, resident or fellow). An external observer is someone who is not affiliated with UHN and applying for a shadowing experience at UHN only. External observers do not have patient interaction, have no access to the hospital operating system and no access to patient information.

Where do I process the payment?

Non-refundable application payment is processed through the online application. The application process will automatically prompt you to pay with your credit card. MasterCard and Visa are accepted.

I am a vendor, how do I acquire privileges to enter the Patient Care Areas?

Please visit Vendor section.

What is the likelihood that I will be connected to a Sponsor if I do not currently have one?

There is no guarantee that a connection with a Sponsor will be made. Coordinators will help to facilitate a connection where possible. It is the Candidate's responsibility to make a connection with a Sponsor.

Is there any assistance in finding housing accommodations during my Observership?

It is the responsibility of the Observer/Authorized Guest to coordinate housing accommodations prior to their visit.

Will UHN provide assistance with visiting Visa requirements?


Will I receive a letter of recommendation or have an evaluation upon completion of my Observership?

No. It is the Sponsor's decision to prepare an evaluation or letter of recommendation.

Will I receive a Certificate upon completion of my Observership?


What is an Affiliated Educational Institution?

If an Observer/Authorized Guest is currently enrolled in an academic institution with whom UHN has a signed Affiliation Agreement, they will be exempt from paying Observership/Authorized Guest fee.

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