COVID Update 29/03/2020


Please see the attached memo from HHS regarding the Ambulatory clinics, referral processes and follow up visits. SJHH is working similarly and I will provide communication on their behalf once available. I have advocated strongly for streamlining of all communications.

We will also be posting a link to a directory of ALL HHS Ambulatory clinics with status updates once available.

I have also attached messages from: Child and Youth Mental Health and well as SJHH Department of Medicine.

ECONSULT should be your first line of pursuit for elective Consultation.


As you know Digital Health is a priority for our Hamilton Health Team.  During this challenging time everyone is doing their best to care for patients in the safest and most efficient manner.  We have heard that many practices are doing telephone visits, some OTN visits, and others embracing eReferral to reduce faxing load.  This rush towards digital uptake in primary care, while challenging now, will position us well at the end of this pandemic for success in our Hamilton Health Team and a new, modernized way of providing quality patient care.    Digital health leadership for primary care is being provided by a joint group including Tammy as Chief along with leaders from HFHT and MFHT, and we are making support for digital health available for all primary care providers in Hamilton through a centralized team of Quality Improvement Specialists at the HFHT. 

Several great resources are available to help you optimize virtual care.  Please go to Hamilton Family Health Team Covid 19  and click on “Virtual Care Supports for Primary Care Teams”  

If you need additional remote support from a Quality Improvement Specialist around: 

-implementing best practices for virtual care into your clinical workflow

-access to a Telus PS toolbar COVID assessment and documentation 

-access to custom forms for COVID-19 assessment and documentation for Telus PS, OSCAR, Accuro, and P&P 

-support for using Ocean eForms for COVID-19 assessment (through tablets or e-mail) 

-support to sign up for, and use, OTN for patient virtual visits, eConsults with specialists etc.  

-support to sign up for, and use, eReferral

 Please email with your question and contact information and a Quality Improvement Specialist will get back to you within 2 business days. 


The call out for volunteers to staff the Assessment Centres has triggered a large number of replies. We are aware that some of our primary care community are encountering appreciable financial challenges given the relative inability to see patients in clinic. The fee codes for telephone care are not yet live.

David Price has kindly offered to organize a primary care job marketplace; this will provide a potential local staffing solution.


To Hamilton physician colleagues:

As many of you know, the rapidity of COVID’s impact on our workforce has resulted in significant disruptions for both physicians and patients.  We know of family physicians who have suddenly lost their usual workspaces (i.e. – student health, cancelled locums).  We also know of patient populations who are suddenly without care or needing additional care.

The Department of Family Medicine is offering the resources of the Chair’s office to be a “matchmaker” for the family physician workforce during the time of COVID related disruption.   Are you a family physician looking for work?  Are you a leader/provider within a health care setting that knows of a need for added family medicine or primary care support?  We need to hear from you! 

Specifically, there is an urgent need for primary care of a population living in Binbrook, under the roof of Able Living.  See below for further details:  

Family Physician Needed: Able living facility in Binbrook: currently has three ventilated patients but will likely receive three more as well as eight patients who have a tracheostomy. [So total of 14 patients]. They need a primary care physician to help with overall coordination of care and to take care of routine issues. Currently a nurse practitioner visits on a regular basis who knows the patients well and is prepared to increase her time to do the required intake for the new patients. If there are any ventilator specific challenges, respiratory therapy technicians take care of this. Our hope is that the physician would commit to only looking after these patients and not be involved in any other high-risk clinical duties [such as working in assessment centres, seeing potential Covid-19 patients in clinic etc. Obviously other types of face-to-face primary care that are low risk would be acceptable].           

You do not need to have knowledge of tracheostomy care, ventilator care etc.— it is really for primary care (e.g. – a UTI) of patients who are ventilated/trached. For now, this will be a fee-for-service role, but once all [potentially 14] patients are transferred to the facility the department will support and advocate for a sessional fee from the ministry.

Are you interested in this work?  Do you know of other work requiring a family physician?  Are you a family physician looking for work?   Please email Dr. David Price at