Wellness Resources for Faculty

PPE Illustration

Supporting wellness — emotional and physical — is an essential element in fostering the high performing, respectful and sustainable community we seek in the Faculty of Medicine.

Some of us are on the frontlines in the fight against COVID-19. Some are in the background, trying to keep our health system operating at peak efficiency. Others struggle with feeling sidelined, doing their part by remaining home to reduce community spread, yet wanting to find other ways to help. Wherever we find ourselves, we are united by a desire to respond to the pandemic. But for all of us that desire is accompanied by stresses and strains. These are unique to each person and each situation, but they are real and we can’t simply push our way through them or pretend they don’t exist. 

Below is a variety of resources to help manage our wellness during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Faculty of Medicine Initiatives
Resource Support LIne  |  Webinars | Wellness @ the Faculty

Individual Support 
Emotional Support / Therapists  |  Distress Support Domestic Violence  |  Self Check-ins / Evaluations

Group Supports
Faculty & Students  |  Residents / Fellows | Medical Students 

Instrumental / Logistical
COVID-19 TestingChildcare and Supporting Children | Ergonomics |  Groceries |  Housing |  Pet Care  

Educational Resources / Articles 
ECHO Ontario  |  Managing Anxiety  |  Decreasing Social Isolation  |  Leadership. |  Physical & Mental Health for Health Care Workers. |  General

 

Faculty of Medicine Initiatives

 

Faculty of Medicine Resource Navigation Line 416-978-8203Give Us A Call

This is a difficult time for us all. Your job, your home, your family responsibilities and your usual wellness routines are all disrupted as a result of COVID 19. Support and resources exist and are being revised and created regularly as the pandemic progresses. 

The Faculty Resource Navigation line
416-978-8203
facultynavigator@utoronto.ca
M-F 12:30pm-8:30pm 

From who to call if you need groceries or pet care, to resources for emotional support, our goal is to help you find the support that you require at this time.  If we don't have the answer to your question we will do the research for you and get back to you, so that you can focus on your other responsibilities.

Requests are confidential. This service is available to all faculty members at the Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto.

Terms and conditions.

 

Webinars

Please join the NIH OITE on October 5, 2020 from 1:00 – 3:30 pm EDT for the first of a virtual seminar series focused on the mental health and well-being on biomedical researchers. The webinar and small group discussions are open to students, fellows, staff and faculty at NIH, universities and research institutions. The topic of our first program is suicide awareness and prevention. We will learn about the scope of the suicide crisis in our nation and around the world, talk about suicide in the biomedical research community, and explore how the COVID-19 pandemic has the potential to increase suicide risk.  In the small groups we will have the opportunity to develop and practice skills to assist us in communicating with someone who may be experiencing suicidal ideation, to make connections and get help for the individual. Because the small groups will be facilitated by mental health experts, you must register in advance to participate. 

 

DATE: October 5, 2020 from 1:00 pm – 3:30 pm EDT

REGISTER HERE:   https://www.training.nih.gov/sas/_20/1958/

 

Information regarding the series will be posted on the OITE website shortly. If you want to be notified about up-coming programs focused on the mental health and well-being of biomedical trainees, please register here: https://www.training.nih.gov/sas/_20/1960/

 

 

 

Wellness @ the Faculty

Office of Health Professions Student Affairs (OHPSA)

https://md.utoronto.ca/OHPSA

To book your appointment or for any inquiries, please contact ohpsa.reception@utoronto.ca

Postgraduate Wellness

For the health and safety of everyone involved, our office is working remotely; however, we are still available to support you via phone or secure video appointments. 

https://pg.postmd.utoronto.ca/current-trainees/while-youre-training/access-wellness-resources/

(416) 946-3074
pgwellness@utoronto.ca

Graduate Student Counsellor

To schedule your first appointment with a counsellor, please contact the Health and Wellness Centre at 416-978-8030 (select option “5”) and ask to book a time with a GLSE (i.e. Faculty of Medicine) counsellor. 

https://glse.utoronto.ca/student-health-and-wellness

 

 

Individual Support

For those seeking support, the links below provide a variety of options including online resources as well as connections to professionals offering therapy and other wellness advice.
 

Emotional Support/Therapists

ACCESS CAMH

Available to all healthcare providers, ACCESS CAMH is a self-referral form, connecting users with CAMH services, supports, and also assist them in navigating what supports they need.

http://www.camh.ca/covid19gethelp

Mind Beacon

Free on-line mental health evaluation, support and CBT to Ontarians.

Special section for Front line health care workers.

https://info.mindbeacon.com/btn542?utm_campaign=Ontario&utm_source=go

Help for Emergency and Intensive Care Staff

Clinical staff working in intensive care and emergency room settings throughout the TAHSN hospitals can contact Dr. Jon Hunter (jon.hunter@sinaihealth.ca), a staff psychiatrist at Sinai Health System. He or his delegate will do a short phone triage and then direct users to care, ranging from 1:1 contact with a psychiatrist to wellness options.

Dr. Jon Hunter
Staff Psychiatrist, Sinai Health System

jon.hunter@sinaihealth.ca 

OMA Physician Health Program 

The Ontario Medical Association’s Physician Health Program supports the wellbeing of all Ontario medical students, residents and practicing physicians and their families. PHP provides confidential support whenever personal or family stress, mental health or substance use concerns arise.

PHP@oma.org

PHP toll-free confidential line at 1-800-851-6606

www.oma.php.org

Monday to Friday, 8:45am – 5:00pm

Ontario COVID-19 Mental Health Network

Free mental health services for Ontario COVID-19 healthcare providers.

https://covid19therapists.com

Psychology works for COVID-19

We, the Canadian Psychological Association (CPA), are pleased to facilitate a referral program to support the front line health care workers of the COVID-19 pandemic. In doing so, we endeavour to connect front line health care workers with psychologists who are available to assist on a pro-bono basis via tele-psychology. 

https://cpa.ca/corona-virus/psychservices/#Ontario

Pandemic Acceptance & Commitment to Empowerment Response Intervention for Healthcare Providers (PACER-HCP)

Health Care Providers (HCPs) and hospital staff can participate in the PACER-HCP - a targeted online training to enhance resilience, and develop Mindfulness, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), and Group Empowerment Psychoeducation skills. You will also have the opportunity to facilitate future groups!

PACER-HCP Recruitment Flyer

 

Distress Support

Toronto Distress Centres

24-hour confidential emotional support and crisis intervention, available 7 days a week to individuals at risk

416-408-4357 or 416-408-HELP, or text 45645

PARO Helpline (for residents and clinical fellows)

Their toll-free number is accessible anywhere in Ontario, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. In order to provide this service, PARO has partnered with Distress Centres of Toronto.

1-866-HELP-DOC (1-866-435-7362)

Gerstein Crisis Centre

GCC is offering a free, 8-week online support group for front line workers on Wednesdays at 12:00 pm from April 1 to May 20, 2020.

http://gersteincentre.org/stay-connected/  or call 416-929-5200

Kids Help Phone

Kids Help Phone is Canada's only 24/7 national service offering professional counselling, information, referrals and volunteer-led, text-based support for young people in English and French. 

1-800-668-6868

Toronto Seniors Helpline

Toronto Seniors Helpline is staffed by trained professionals, providing crisis counselling and supportive counselling as well as triaging crisis calls to the Crisis Outreach Service for Seniors (COSS) team for in-person visits.

416-217-2077

 

Domestic Violence

If yourself or a child are in immediate danger, please call 911

As noted by the support organization, Ending Violence Association of Canada (EVA CAN), "many of the measures necessary to responding to COVID-19 – isolation; closures of daycares and schools; the potential impact on employment and income; and general uncertainty, stress and disruption – are likely to exacerbate the known risk factors for domestic violence."

Confidential, 24/7 assistance is available in the GTA through the Assaulted Women’s Helpline.

Assaulted Women’s Helpline:

  • GTA: 416-863-0511
  • GTA TTY: 416-364-8762
  • TOLL-FREE: 1-866-863-0511
  • TOLL-FREE TTY: 1-8666-863-7868
  • #SAFE (#7233) on your Bell, Rogers, Fido or Telus Mobile
  • http://www.awhl.org
Luke's Place is a unique support and resource centre for women and children who have left, or who are about to leave, an abusive relationship. It provides tool kits regarding safety planning, preparing to leave and what to expect from the Family Court system.

https://lukesplace.ca/

Call 905.728.0978 or
1.866.516.3116

 

Self check-ins/evaluations

Self-Navigate CAMH

An inventory of support programs for health care workers, designed for users to self-navigate.

http://www.camh.ca/covid19HCW

 

Group Supports

 

Faculty Members & Students

MD-led Virtual Chats, Sponsored by the OMA.

The Physician Health Program invites you to drop in virtually between noon and 1:00 pm each weekday to support one another during the COVID-19 pandemic. The sessions will be led by Dr. Kasra Khorasani, a psychiatrist at Mount Sinai Health Systems and St. Joseph’s Health Centre in Toronto, who is an expert in group therapy. This is not psychotherapy.

Stay for one minute or as long as you can, and come back as many times as you like. Everyone is welcome. The chats are meant to be a safe space where we can talk about how we are managing.

Join Zoom Meeting Daily from 12:00-1:00 pm

https://zoom.us/j/595378840?pwd=NGx4N0IvZ1dHWDhyZGhOTTJZWUt1UT09

Meeting ID: 595 378 840, Password: 067104

 

COVID-19 Women Physician Emotional Wellbeing

Facebook group. 

https://www.facebook.com/groups/235295047624227/

30 Minute Physician Mindfulness Sessions

Monday through Thursday from 8:00-8:30pm.

Offered via Zoom. See PDF for details. No OHIP required; this is not treatment.

Physician Mindfulness Brochure (PDF link)



Residents/Fellows

OMA-MD Resident Chat Sessions 

Drop-in virtually from 2:00-3:00 pm: Monday, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays. Stay for a minute or as long as is possible for you and come back as many times as you like. These sessions will be ongoing as long as needed. Facilitated by UofT staff psychiatrist, Dr. Kasra Khorasani. All residents and fellows are welcome. This will occur via zoom and is meant to be a safe space to talk about how we are managing.

Time: Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday; 2:00-3:00 pm Eastern Time (US and Canada)

https://zoom.us/j/977590776

Meeting ID: 977 590 776

 

Medical Students

Peer-to-Peer Discussion Forum

The MD Program, in partnership with the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH), has created a Discussion Forum for UofT MD students to obtain support around stress and anxiety related to the COVID-19 pandemic. This online peer-to-peer discussion forum is a space where you can receive support, encouragement, and share your experiences with managing your stress and anxiety related to COVID-19. Contact the Office of Health Professional Student Affairs for details on how to access this group.

https://md.utoronto.ca/OHPSA

Wellness Ambassadors

The SHINE team has student Wellness Ambassadors who provide resource support to medical students.

Students can access this link http://uoftshine.weebly.com/wellness-ambassadors.html

On-Line Interpersonal Group for MDs

At times of crisis such as now, we find ourselves having more interpersonal conflicts with our bosses, colleagues, patients, family members and partners. As stressful and unpleasant some of those conflicts are, we now have a possibility of examining, learning and changing some of our interpersonal patterns so to have more adaptive and fulfilling relationships.

On-Line Interpersonal Group for MDs creates a supportive cohesive reflective space where such changes can come about. This will be a closed twenty sessions weekly On-Line HIPAA compliant (private and secure) Zoom group covered by OHIP. The participants will be MDs working in Ontario. The participants have the option of continuing with the subsequent 20 session groups. 

Wednesdays 3:00-4:45 pm
starting June 3rd, 2020

Interested MDs can contact
Kasra Khorasani MD. FRCPC
kasra.khorasani@utoronto.ca
416 627 4590 

 

Instrumental/Logistical

COVID-19 Testing

Information on how to get tested for COVID-19 in Toronto

https://www.toronto.ca/home/covid-19/covid-19-what-you-should-do/covid-19-have-symptoms-or-been-exposed/covid-19-assessment-centres/ 

 

Child Care and Supporting Children

Helpful guide on completely free virtual summer camps.                             

https://summercamphub.com/free-online-summer-camps

Care.com

A matching service for people looking for childcare, pet care, and senior care. Providers can create profiles and families search profiles to identify potential providers.

https://www.care.com/en-ca/

Rent-a-counsellor

Trained camp counsellors (with no camps to work at) providing fun physically distanced summer camp activities in your back yard or drive way.

http://www.rentacounsellor.com/

Camp Kinda

A free, virtual day camp experience with camps geared to grades K-8. Campers receive a daily email with 3-4 hours of videos, virtual tours, reading, crafts and movement options. Themes include "Historys Mysterys" and "Making Movies". Runs from June 1st until the end of August 2020.

https://campkinda.org/

Dancepl3y

Week long half day dance or sport programming for up to 6 kids in your back yard. COVID precautions in place. Contact northyork@dancepl3y.com for details.

http://www.dancepl3y.com/

Helping Children Cope with Stress During the 2019-nCoV Outbreak

Created by the WHO

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1AM3QGME29z5HBXnGzKxjETyNe-c37uCywPR0oLmL-ac/viewform?edit_requested=true

Coronavirus – How to Talk to Your Child

A guide to talking about the pandemic to your children from the KidsHealth website.

https://kidshealth.org/en/parents/coronavirus-how-talk-child.html

 

Ergonomics

Ergonomics for Home Offices

Tune into a new podcast called, “We’ve gOT Your Back: The Ergo Minute” hosted by Julia Giancola and Madison Lazarou. These Occupational Therapy students bring you advice from U of T experts on how to apply ergonomic strategies in your home office, so that you can work more comfortably, productively and reduce the risk of stress and injury on your body. 

https://www.physicaltherapy.utoronto.ca/news-events/weve-got-your-back-the-ergo-minute-podcast/

 

Groceries

U of T MD Program support by medical students

Healthcare providers in the GTA can submit the form below to request support for getting groceries, prescription pick up, coffee runs to the hospital, food delivery to the hospital.

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1AM3QGME29z5HBXnGzKxjETyNe-c37uCywPR0oLmL-ac/viewform?edit_requested=true

Grocery Hero

A grocery delivery service staffed by volunteers showing their support for medical professionals during COVID19.

https://www.getgroceryhero.com/
Selected grocery stores are offering front of the line privileges for health professionals (with the presentation of hospital identification badge).
  • Longos
  • Costco
  • Loblaws/Shoppers Drug Mart

 

Housing/Accommodations

Please contact The Faculty Resource Navigation line for information on temporary accommodation for physicians looking to self-isolate.

416-978-8203
facultynavigator@utoronto.ca

Housing Accommodation, Car Rentals and Parking for Residents and Fellows

We are pleased to provide the following supports to those who may require them:

  • Short-term accommodation for displaced trainee
  • Car rentals
  • Parking
For more information please contact Lisa Bevacqua at lisa.bevacqua@utoronto.ca

 

Pet Care

Free emergency pet care including dog walking, pet feeding, pet boarding for front line workers https://www.bffplaycare.com/copy-of-cv-19-epc

 

Education Resources & Articles

 

ECHO Ontario Coping with COVID

A virtual education and capacity building program that builds a community of practice, promotes resilience, provides skills and resources, and supports overall mental wellbeing amongst hospital-based health care providers currently supporting the COVID pandemic.

For Residents:

Wednesdays 2:00pm - 3:00pm
Fridays 12:30pm -1:30pm
Apply here: https://edc.camhx.ca/redcap/surveys/?s=KXNTKXKFXY   

For healthcare providers:

Wednesdays 12:30pm -1:30pm
Fridays 2:00pm -3:00pm
Apply here: https://edc.camhx.ca/redcap/surveys/?s=KXNTKXKFXY  

 

Managing Anxious Feelings

Keeping yourself healthy: Resilience and Stress inoculation during COVID-19, Ontario Medical Association

3 steps to coping with anything including COVIDvideo by Drs. Jon Hunter and Bob Maunder, Sinai Health System

Health Anxiety – What is it and how can You Overcome it?, Anxiety and Depression Association of America

Managing COVID19 AnxietyAnxiety and Depression Association of America

 

Decreasing Social Isolation

How to Manage Your Loneliness, The New York Times

The Ministry of Loneliness, Canadian Family Physician via  National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine. Dr Nick Pimlott looks at the prevalence of loneliness, as evidenced by the appointment of a Minister of Loneliness in the United Kingdom.

A (pre-COVID) report from the Minister of Loneliness in the UK, The Jo Cox Foundation 

 

Leadership

How to Be an Inclusive Leader Through a Crisis, Harvard Business Review

Ten Tips for Leaders – Supporting Protective Professional Relationships (PPR), Link to Pier’s PPR tip sheet for leaders

The Buddy SystemCenters for Disease Control and Prevention

Effect of a Professional Coaching Intervention on the Well-being and Distress of Physicians, Jama Network

 

Managing Physical and Mental Health of Health Care Workers

Ten Tips on how to Support Personal Protective Relationships (PPR), Link to Pier’s tip sheet for faculty

Fight COVID19 with Better Sleep: A Guide for Healthcare WorkersCenter for the Study of Traumatic Stress

The Psychological Needs of Healthcare Staff as a Result of the Coronavirus PandemicBritish Psychological Society

Managing Mental Health Challenges Faced by Healthcare Workers During COVID-19 Pandemic, The British Medical Journal

Managing Healthcare Worker Provider Stress Associated with COVID 19 Virus OutbreakNational Centre for PTSD

Understanding and Addressing Sources of Anxiety among Health Care Professionals during the COVID-19 Pandemic, Jama Network 

COVID-19 in Wuhan: Immediate Psychological Impact on 5062 Health Workers, medRxiv

Factors Associated with Mental Health Outcomes Among Health Care Workers Exposed to Coronavirus Disease 2019, Jama Network

Prevalence of Psychiatric Disorders among Toronto Hospital Workers One to Two Years after the SARS Outbreak, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine

Stress and Psychological Distress Among SARS Survivors 1 Year After the OutbreakThe Canadian Journal of Psychiatry

SARS Control and Psychological Effects of QuarantineNational Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine

Occurrence, Prevention, and Management of the Psychological Effects of Emerging Virus Outbreaks on Healthcare Workers: Rapid Review and Meta-analysis The British Medical Journal

 

General

CAMH website re COVID 19 and mental health

https://static-content.springer.com/esm/art:10.1007%2Fs12630-020-01716-2/MediaObjects/12630_2020_1716_MOESM1_ESM.pdfSleep Tips

The Discomfort you’re Feeling is Grief, Harvard Business Review

COVID-19 Wellness Infographic, created & resources compiled by residents at the University of Toronto

Crowd Sourced Resources for Coping with COVID-19 Google Docs

Mental health and psychosocial considerations during the COVID-19 outbreak, WHO 

WHO Mental Health Considerations During COVID

 

The Faculty Resource Navigation Line Terms and Conditions:

By participating in this service, you agree to the following terms and conditions:

  • This is not therapeutic or otherwise a health care service and no clinical relationship with the support worker or UofT is formed by use of this service;
  • This is not a reporting mechanism for concerns about specific individuals or entities; [but we will aim to provide information about relevant processes and pathways for reporting]
  • The services provided are intended to be confidential in nature and any personal information collected will not be retained beyond the service period (i.e. after the call is resolved);
  • The service is not a crisis support line.  If you are in a crisis please contact the Distress Centre at 1-833-456-4566, call 911 or proceed to the closest emergency room.