Virtual Emergency Department
Toronto’s Virtual Emergency Department (ED) brings together emergency doctors from Unity Health Toronto, Sunnybrook and University Health Network to provide a unified virtual emergency room service that is available to all Torontonians. Virtual emergency visits are optional – Unity Health’s in-person Emergency Departments are still available for walk-in visits if you need urgent care.
Toronto’s Virtual Emergency Department hours of operation are:
- Monday to Friday: 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
- Saturday to Sunday: 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
If all time slots are full or you feel you can’t wait, go to your nearest Emergency Department or Urgent Care Centre in person.
For more information, read the frequently asked questions below.
Who can use this service?
You can book a virtual emergency visit if you:
- Are physically located in Ontario at the time of the appointment
- Cannot make an urgent appointment with a family doctor or nurse practitioner
- Have an urgent medical problem that is not life threatening, such as:
- Body ache
- Bites and stings
- Skin or nail infection
- Urinary tract infection symptoms
- Sore throat
- Nasal congestion
- Sinus infection
- Frostbite/cold injury
- Sprains and minor injuries
- Nausea or diarrhea
- Painless red eye
- Eyelid redness or bump
When should I visit an ED in person?
Please visit an Emergency Department in person immediately for:
- Possible broken bones/fractures (i.e. bones or joints look different, cannot put weight on injury)
- Chest pains and/or racing heartbeat
- Breathing problems
- Skin abscess
- Vomiting and inability to drink fluids
- Fever/severe pain that is not improved with acetaminophen/ibuprofen (i.e. Tylenol/Advil)
- Neck stiffness or severe headache
- Serious injuries (i.e. bleeding that won’t stop, deep cuts, head injury)
- Difficulty speaking or swallowing
- Loss or change of vision
- Numbness or weakness of the face or body
- Inability to walk
- New confusion or memory problems
- New or worsening seizures
- Pregnancy and labour problems
- Mental health crisis
Please contact your family doctor for all other health issues that are not urgent.
Please contact your regular prescriber for opioid pain medicine, benzodiazepine, methadone, suboxone, cannabis or stimulant prescriptions or renewals.
For COVID-19 symptoms or concerns:
- Call 911 or visit an Emergency Department if you or a loved one are experiencing severe COVID-19 symptoms (i.e. difficulty breathing, chest pain, confusion, loss of consciousness) and require immediate medical attention. Otherwise, follow Ontario’s guidelines on COVID-19 testing and isolation: http://www.ontario.ca/page/chttps://www.ontario.ca/page/covid-19-stop-spread
What do I need for my virtual visit?
You will need the following items:
- A computer, smartphone or tablet with video and microphone
- A strong internet connection
- A valid email address (to access the appointment link and reminders)
- Your Ontario Health Insurance (OHIP) card, if you have one
- A quiet, private space to have your virtual ED visit
What can I expect at the virtual visit?
The doctor will talk to you about your concerns. Depending on your needs, the doctor may suggest the following next steps:
- Sending a prescription to your pharmacy
- Making an appointment with a specialist doctor or clinic
- Ask you to see a family doctor or visit another Urgent Care Centre for follow-up, including ordering tests or imaging
- Ask you to go to your nearest Emergency Department for an in-person visit
- Nothing further, if your need can be addressed through the virtual visit
Last updated November 24, 2022