Ten great things that happened this week

Flowers installed outside St. Joseph's Health Centre

Flowers installed outside St. Joseph’s Health Centre (click/tap image to enlarge)

(June 11, 2020) – We know that living and working through COVID-19 is tough, but that doesn’t mean we can’t celebrate the wonderful things that are happening at our sites – and for our people – along the way.

Each week, we’re sharing a list of 10 great things that happened this week. Do you have a story you’d like to share? Send it to communications@unityhealth.to.

1) Beautiful flowers were installed outside of St. Joseph’s as a thank you to staff

On Monday, a large and colourful floral creation was installed just outside of the Melnyk Entrance at St. Joseph’s Health Centre as a way to thank frontline workers for their incredible work during the pandemic. This generous initiative is being led by Feel Good Flowers and is happening at multiple hospitals across Toronto. Check out St. Joseph’s installation here.

2) CBC’s Front-Line Heroes recognizes four of Providence’s Orthopaedic and Amputee Rehab team members

This week, CBC’s Front-Line Heroes series recognized four members from our Providence Healthcare’s incredible Orthopaedic and Amputee Rehabilitation Unit for the care they are providing our COVID-19 patients. See the post here.

3) Phase one of our network’s gradual reopening started this week

On Monday, we officially started the gradual reopening of our ambulatory services as part of phase one in our planning. Please click here for more information.

4) We virtually celebrated this year’s St. Joseph’s Our Shared Values Awards winners

On June 5, our Unity Health Toronto community gathered online to celebrate our St. Joseph’s staff who were recipients of the annual Our Shared Values Awards. Read the beautiful nominations that were submitted for the award winners here.

5) This St. Joseph’s team supported the wellness of its staff as they cared for COVID-19 patients

When members of the Interprofessional Resource Team at St. Joseph’s were redeployed to care for patients with COVID-19 across the Centre, Managers Kate MacWilliams and Sandy Santos and Dietitian Molly Schoo quickly focused on how to best support their wellness. “Everyone comes into work with such a positive attitude but deep down, we know that many of our staff are dealing with acute stress and anxiety,” said MacWilliams. Read about their work here.

Caroline Buldoc

Caroline Buldoc

6) A St. Joseph’s Respiratory Therapist ran 80 kilometers to fundraise for her team

Caroline Buldoc is a Respiratory Therapist (RT) at St. Joseph’s and a long-distance runner. Last week, Caroline embarked on a 12-hour run in support of her RT colleagues. She ran 80 kilometres and raised $4,270 to support her team’s annual education days. She is pictured here on the day of her run by Toronto’s lakeshore.

7) St. Michael’s Family Health team is helping expand testing in the community

St. Michael’s Family Health Team physicians are supporting neighbourhood partners during COVID-19 by expanding testing into the community. Read about their work here.

8) We celebrated our network’s ongoing sustainability during World Environment Day

It was World Environment Day on Friday! Hospitals have huge environmental footprints and our teams are always looking into how we can reduce our network’s energy consumption and waste. Recently, we installed LED lights across the network and introduced compostable cutlery, containers and cups at the St. Joseph’s cafeteria. Check out our most recent sustainability projects here.

9) We received this lovely testimonial from the daughter of a patient who used our e-visiting program

We are currently offering video visits across our sites to connect inpatients and residents with their loved ones virtually while the pandemic is restricting in-person visits. Here is one letter we received from the daughter of a patient at St. Joseph’s:

Because of the pandemic situation with COVID-19, I was not able to travel to Canada and see my father at St. Joseph’s. Thanks to your service, I was able to help him in his recovery process. We spoke every day, every time we made small progress but it was a huge step in his recovery process. We managed to speak just for a few minutes with doctors and nurses but enough to understand what was happening. Also, all the people I have communicated with are very nice and cooperative. We have six hours different time zone and you guys are always scheduled good time for me and my mother. Thank you all! Thanks to doctors for saving my father. Thanks to nurses they helped him to recover and started to function normal, even he was very difficult patient. Thank you for everything!”

10) St. Michael’s teams collaborate for study on COVID-19 symptoms

A recent study led by St. Michael’s Dr. John Lee found loss of smell or taste were 14 and 11 times more likely in people who are positive with COVID-19. The study was a collaboration with the St. Michael’s assessment centre. Read more.