Patient Safety and Policies
Providing the best and safest care possible to our patients is our top priority at Unity Health Toronto. As a network of health-care facilities serving the diverse communities of Toronto, our patients, clients and their families rely on us each and every day to provide safe, high-quality care.
There are many initiatives and strategies that go into helping us achieve our commitment of putting patients first by providing the safest care. This section helps to show the people we serve and those who serve with us how we are staying true to these strategic commitments. See below for our policies and procedures that reflect our commitment to patient safety, excellence in care and well-being for all.
Latex balloons and products are not allowed in any of our sites. This is for the protection of patients, staff and visitors who may have a latex sensitivity or allergy. If you have a latex sensitivity/allergy, please let staff know when you register or are admitted. If you want to bring balloons, Foil/Mylar balloons are allowed.
Being informed and involved in your own or your loved one’s care is another way we can work together to promote high quality and safe care. At Unity Health, we want to encourage our patients and their families to speak up when they have questions or concerns about the care they are receiving.
If you are worried about your care or the care of your loved one:
- Find the name of the assigned nurse or doctor and speak with them
- The assigned doctor and nurse names may be found on a whiteboard by the bedside. Go to the unit desk and ask for the specific nurse
- If you can’t find the name of your or your loved one’s assigned nurse, ask the person at the desk for the charge nurse and ask for the appropriate nurse/doctor to be paged
- If the charge nurse cannot help, ask for the unit manager or the after hours manager
- Cell phones can be used by patients, staff, volunteers and visitors at all our sites.
- Please keep calls to a minimum in patient care areas.
- Cell phone use is not allowed in some patient care areas. Visitors can make phone calls in waiting areas and other public or retail areas. While you are visiting, please turn cell phones to vibrate or silent mode.
Are you worried about the care of your loved one or your own care? Follow these steps:
- Find the name of the assigned nurse and doctor on the whiteboard by the bedside. Go to the desk and ask for the nurse.
- If the assigned nurse cannot help ask the person at the desk for the charge nurse and ask for the doctor to be paged.
- If the charge nurse cannot help or the doctor does not call back, dial 0 and ask for the manager of the unit or after hours, the manager on call.
- If the manager cannot help, Dial 0 and ask for the Administrative Director or after hours the Administrator On-Call and/or the Physician Director.
- Are you still worried? Dial 0 to Call/ Page the CEO of the Hospital and/or the Chief of Staff.
As a patient at Unity Health, your health-care providers will ask you to confirm your identity to ensure you receive the right treatment, medication, and procedures. There are two ways to identify yourself:
- Provide staff with two unique identifiers (for example your full name and date of birth)
- Let staff check your ID band
You may be asked to provide your: Full Name, Date of Birth, Patient ID Number, Address, Telephone Number, or Provincial Health Card Number.
By working together, we can keep you from falling. Here are some tips to keep you safe:
- Use your call bell if you need help getting out of bed
- Wear supportive walking shoes or ask for non-slip socks
- Keep your belongings and call bell within easy reach
- Use your walker, cane or wheelchair while you’re here
- To learn more, please ask your health-care provider about our falls prevention video and brochure
During a fire alarm, wait for instructions from Unity Health or fire department staff. All fire doors will automatically close until an “all clear” announcement is made. Fire exits are clearly marked throughout the hospital.
Flowers are not allowed in the intensive care and respirology units, or in any room where patients are allergic to flowers.
We ask everyone who comes to our locations to wash their hands and use sanitizer often. Many patients/residents have weakened immune systems that make them susceptible to a variety of illnesses.
Keeping your hands clean will help you avoid getting sick and spreading germs to others. Here are some hand hygiene tips:
- Alcohol-based hand cleansers are useful when soap and water are not available
- Don’t forget the backs of your hands and in between your fingers
- Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 15 seconds
- Hand hygiene is everyone’s responsibility. Feel free to ask our staff if they have washed their hands before they provide treatment or conduct procedures.
As an organization sponsored by the Catholic Health Sponsors of Ontario, Unity Health Toronto is committed to treat each person we serve with respect, dignity and compassion – values deeply rooted in our mission as a Catholic health-care provider.
Unity Health Toronto does not provide medical assistance in dying.
If a patient at one of our sites wants to learn about their options for end-of-life care, including medical assistance in dying, we will provide them with information necessary for making a sound decision. In some cases, this may require the safe and timely transfer of care of the patient to another institution.
For more information, please visit the Ministry of Health Medical Assistance in Dying and end-of-life decisions page.
Medication safety is a top priority at Unity Health Toronto. By working together, we can make sure you get your medications safely. View this poster for helpful tips.
Scented products can cause serious health problems for some people including migraines and trouble breathing. Please do not wear scented products at our sites (no perfumes, colognes, aftershave, body sprays, etc.).
All Unity Health sites are smoke-free. This means that smoking is prohibited on all our grounds as well as inside cars on our property. This policy applies to all our patients, staff, volunteers, students and visitors in compliance with the Government of Ontario’s Smoke-Free Ontario Act.
To protect the privacy of those around you, speak with your care team before taking pictures or making an audio/video recording. Recording other patients without their consent is against the law. Recording other people’s conversations is also against the law.
You can learn more about our audio and video guidelines here. Thank you for helping us protect privacy.
Hospitals can be stressful places. It is important to treat each other as compassionately and calmly as we can. Unity Health has zero tolerance for violence and abuse of anyone within our walls.
Your Health Care – Be Involved is an initiative developed by the Ontario Hospital Association’s Patient Safety Support Service with funding from the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care. Your Health Care – Be Involved is the first of its kind in Ontario, providing patients with five tips to engage and encourage them to be more involved in their health care:
Be involved in your health care. Speak up if you have questions or concerns about your care.
Tell a member of your health care team about your past illnesses and your current health condition.
Bring all of your medicines with you when you go to the hospital or to a medical appointment.
Tell a member of your health care team if you have ever had an allergic or bad reaction to any medicine or food.
Make sure you know what to do when you go home from the hospital or from your medical appointment.
Last updated November 14, 2023