This anthology is a celebration of nurses. While the stories reflect the work of a collection of nursing teams, they are not isolated reflections; they are representative of the passion and dedication of every nurse at Scarborough Health Network.

This is our contribution to the countless stories being told in our communities and throughout Canada during Nursing Week 2023. We are proud to share them as a testament to the integral role nurses play in a patient’s health care journey.

Meet SHN’s New Nurse-Led Outreach Program

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Scarborough Health Network (SHN) has recently launched its Nurse-Led Outreach Program (NLOT), a collaboration with Ontario Health and Long-Term Care (LTC) homes to support care for elderly patients in our Scarborough community. The NLOT team consists of Nurse Practitioners and Registered Nurses who will work closely with LTC homes to support resident care through assessments and treatment for those with complex needs. As we celebrate Nursing Week, SHN would like to acknowledge and shine a light on this incredible team, who support some of our community’s most vulnerable populations.

Nurse Navigator helps primary care providers access Scarborough healthcare services

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Nurses lend the versatility and knowledge of the health system they gain on the job to support the success of a wide range of programs and services. Jennifer Davis is a registered nurse and nurse navigator for Scarborough’s Seamless Care Optimizing the Patient Experience (SCOPE) service, which connects primary care providers (PCPs) with specialists, tests and procedures, community care and mental health resources in real time. Through her experience as a nurse, she has built long-lasting relationships with many physicians in the hospital and across a number of specialties that she uses to bridge the gap between primary care and the rest of the health system.

Giving Life: The Impact of Organ Donation

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A background in nursing has led many of our people to play important leadership and advocacy roles for a range of services. Meet Amanda Firth, a registered nurse (RN) and patient care manager at SHN’s General Hospital. After graduating from Toronto Metropolitan University, Amanda worked as an RN in the multi-organ transplant unit before pursing nursing leadership roles and completing her Master of Health Management. She has spent much of her career caring for patients who may be eligible to donate, or who have received the gift of transplant themselves, and has witnessed first-hand the value and impact of donation..

Managing Mental Health While Living with Diabetes

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SHN’s diabetes and mental health programs are partnering to expand care for patients living with diabetes. Chronic diseases like diabetes impact many aspects of patients’ lives, including their mental health. With our new clinic, diabetes patients can now be referred to mental health services for psychiatric symptoms. It’s incredible nurses like Toni Thomas from SHN’s diabetes program that are bringing this innovative clinic to life.

Reflections on Care

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Nurses Look Back on their Time in the temporary Transitional Care Unit

In January 2022 during the fifth wave of the pandemic, several Scarborough Health Network (SHN) nurses were a part of a team effort to establish a temporary Transitional Care Unit (TCU) based in the community. They supported patients transitioning from needing hospital care to being ready to go home.

While the TCU wrapped up operations on March 31, the impact of this temporary unit on these nurses was lasting and profound. Several of them shared reflections of their journey, which speak to the incredible passion underlying nursing and the many roles these professionals play every day.

Read what SHN nurses have to say about working in the TCU

I am proud and grateful that I have been part of the TCU team. It has been an amazing place to work, and I have made some good memories working alongside with some great staff. It has been a journey, where we all achieved in caring for our unique patient population.

I gained a wealth of knowledge and experience from my time in the TCU. I have learned so much from working with incredible staff and patients, and I am grateful for the opportunities provided to me to develop my skills and expertise.

Who would have thought that the new unit, full of hospital beds and medical equipment, would in just a few days would become a temporary home to many patients and staff from across SHN. We made it comfortable and cozy, as many of the patients and visitors commented. Care from all disciplines was excellent and everyone wanted to be part of the TCU family. We created a lovely lounge where patients could gather and watch movies. A musician was also invited to sing and play guitar, with many of our patients gathered in the lounge and who joined in the sing-alongs. TCU was a very special place that I am honored to be part of its success.

I’m grateful and honoured to have had the opportunity to work with such dedicated managers, doctors, clinical practice leaders, nurses, patient support workers, administrative staff, social workers, pharmacists, physiotherapists and occupational therapists, dieticians, speech-language therapists, recreational therapists, chaplin support, and environmental services staff. Everyone on this team gave their best to deliver the best care possible to our patients and families.

It felt like a whirlwind, but I really enjoyed working with the wonderful team that made it all happen so quickly. Everyone came together and put in long hours to help set up the unit. I still remember many of the patients and the conversations I had with them and their families as they were settling into the new environment.

It was a great place to work, and I had a great time working as a team and providing the best care for our patients. Our leaders were amazing in supporting the staff and facilitating the needs of the TCU. I will miss it greatly, but at the same time, I am happy that the healthcare system is slowly returning to normal functional levels.

Fast-tracking Nurses to the Operating Room

EnRoute to OR is one of SHN’s educational programs for registered nurses to fast-track their careers. EnRoute gives nurses the opportunity to develop their skills, and receive hands-on education to be successful in the operating room. Get to know Keisha, the program’s Clinical Practice Leader, and previous EnRoute to OR participants Shafiq, Danielle and Stephanie, and their experiences in the program.

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Hear from Keisha, the program’s Clinical Practice Leader, about why you EnRoute to OR is a great opportunity.

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Shafiq was previously a RN with our surgery team, and jumped at the opportunity to further develop his nursing career at SHN.

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Hear about Danielle’s experience as a new grad coming in to our EnRoute to OR program when it was first developed.

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Stephanie previously worked with our surgery team, and then joined our EnRoute program to further develop her skills.