Sunnybrook Hospital – visiting protocol

Please see the following news article from about Sunnybrook Hospital’s new visiting protocol. Note that you have the option of subscribing to local newsletters on this website.

Sunnybrook no longer allowing visitors during coronavirus pandemic
Hospitals tightening visitor policy per ministry request
March 21, 2020
Aaron D’Andrea (

Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre in North York will no longer allow visitors during the COVID-19 pandemic.

On Saturday morning, the hospital, which cared for the first coronavirus patient in Canada, made the announcement that as of 7 p.m. on March 21, no visitors would be permitted on site.

“This includes family members or companions accompanying patients to appointments or procedures,” Sunnybrook said on its website. The policy change is in effect until further notice.

“We understand that this is a difficult change for those with loved ones who need to be in the hospital, but it is an important precaution being put in place to ensure the safety of all those at Sunnybrook, including our sickest and most vulnerable patients.”

The change in policy follows a memo issued by Ontario’s Chief Medical Officer of Health, Dr. David Williams, on March 19 advising all hospitals “only allow essential visitors until further notice.”

“The ministry is identifying essential visitors as those who have a patient who is dying or very ill or a parent/guardian of an ill child or youth, a visitor of a patient undergoing surgery or a woman giving birth,” the memo reads. “These visitors must continue to be actively screened into these settings.”

Hospitals across the province are making the policy change.

In Toronto, SickKids is only allowing one adult caregiver per patient. No siblings or other visitors are permitted.

Humber River Hospital is no longer allowing visitors at its three sites, including its two Reactivation Care Centres. There will be limited exceptions including patients who are at end-of-life, critically ill, pediatric patients, patients receiving surgery, or women in the birthing suites.

North York General Hospital is also not allowing visitors, saying on its website exceptions will be made on a case-by-case basis.

Those wondering what the changes to the visitor policy are at their local hospital are asked to check their institution’s website.