Family Practice Health Centre (FPHC)

The Women’s College Hospital (WCH) Family Practice Health Centre provides care for patients of all genders and age groups — from newborns to the elderly. We are one of the largest clinics in Ontario, providing more than 85 000 visits per year to our patients.

We are a Family Health Team and are fortunate to work together with nurses, nurse practitioners, social workers, dietitians, a pharmacist, an occupational therapist, and a physiotherapist. We are one of the busiest family medicine training units within the University of Toronto’s Department of Family and Community Medicine

Contact Info

77 Grenville St.
Floor 3 and 4
Toronto, ON M5S 1B3

Phone: 416-323-6060

Hours of Service

Monday to Thursday 9 a.m. – 8 p.m.
Friday 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.
(Closed between noon and 1 p.m.)

Saturday 9:00 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. (Urgent Care Only)


Mission

We deliver equitable team-based care, train primary care providers for the future and conduct impactful scholarship, all in partnership with our diverse communities.

Vision

Outstanding health for all, powered by exceptional team-based primary care, medical education and system-influencing scholarship.

Values

We will be guided by our values in everything we do:

  • Kindness: Demonstrating empathy, understanding, and compassion towards patients, learners, and colleagues.
  • Collaboration: Fostering teamwork and partnerships among healthcare professionals, learners, and community stakeholders.
  • Innovation: Embracing creativity, curiosity, and continuous improvement to advance healthcare practices and education.
  • Equity: Ensuring fairness, inclusivity, and accessibility in providing care and educational opportunities to diverse populations.
  • Lifelong Learning: Embracing a culture of ongoing education, growth, and professional development for all team members.
  • Patient-Responsive: Being attentive to the varying needs and preferences of each patient in decision-making and care delivery

Patient Experiences with Care

View the Patient Experiences with Care .pdf

Our clinic has been asking patients for feedback to make sure we provide the care you need. The survey is being done at all family medicine teaching clinics at the University of Toronto. Below are some highlights from Spring/Summer 2022.

We included new questions in our most recent survey to learn more from you about:

Phone Booking Experience

  • 86% booked their appointment over the phone
  • 18% waited more than 10 minutes before being able to speak to someone to book their appointment
  • 79% rated their experience when booking an appointment as good, very good or excellent.

Care Experience

  • 87% felt that they received care within a reasonable time from their primary care provider
  • 95% felt they were involved in decisions as much as they wanted in their care by their doctor or nurse practitioner
  • 93% were satisfied or very satisfied with the care they received at our clinic

Next Steps

We regularly meet as a team to discuss the survey results and how we can improve. We are working to:

  • Ensure patients can access care within a reasonable time frame
  • Provide access to urgent care on evenings, weekends and public holidays
  • pilot online bookings with some providers.

Learn more about our survey.


Family Practice Health Centre 2023/24 Quality Improvement Plan

View the Family Practice Health Centre 2023/24 Quality Improvement Plan .pdf

What is a quality improvement plan?

  • A documented set of quality commitments we make to patients, staff and the community
  • An opportunity for accountability to ourselves and Ontario health
  • A progress report we can use to reflect on our growth
  • A benchmark for continual improvement how we measure

How we measure:
Performance assessments provide us with the opportunity to pinpoint and analyze areas
of improvement, to serve you better. The WCH Family Practice Heath Centreʼs QIP performance remains in range of targets set out by Ontario Health.

Bar Chart representing 60% vs 55%QIP Category: Timely and Efficient Transitions
Can our patients access urgent care on the same or next day?

  • Current Performance – 60%
  • *Benchmark = 55%
  • Target = 65%

What is being done to help improve rates:

  • Allocating appointment slots for daytime same day urgent care
  • Adding additional clinic hours to the Afterhours Urgent Care Clinic

Bar chart reprsenting 86 % vs 83%

QIP Category: Service Excellence
Do our patients feel involved in decisions about their care?

  • Current Performance – 87%
  • *Benchmark = 83%
  • Target = 90%

What is being done to help improve rates:

  • Routinely reviewing Patient Experience Survey data to understand how to best improve this indicator

Bar chart representgin 53% vs 43%

QIP Category: Safe and Effective Care
Are we monitoring patients with diabetes who are over 40 years old effectively?

  • Current Performance = 53%
  • *Benchmark = 43%
  • Target = 58%

What is being done to help improve rates:

  • Create a diabetes working group that will commit to improving diabetes care
  • Implementing a diabetes management flow sheet which will easily track HbA1C completion

Bar chart representing 56% vs 60%

QIP Category: Timely And Efficient Transitions
How would you rate your overall experience when booking an appointment over the phone?

  • Current Performance =  56%
  • *Benchmark= 60%
  • Target = 60%

What is being done to help improve rates?

  • Piloting online appointment booking
  • Implementing self-check-in kiosks to help build secretary capacity

Bar chart representing 74% vs 65%QIP Category: Safe and Effective Care
Are we effectively screening our patients for:

Colorectal cancer:

  • Current Performance =  74%
  • *Benchmark = 65%
  • Target = 76%

What is being done to help improve rates?

  • We are above benchmark and will continue with current process to maintain performance

 

bar chart representing 71% vs 55%Breast cancer:

  • Current Performance =  71%
  • *Benchmark = 55%
  • Target = 73%

What is being done to help improve rates?

  • We are above benchmark and will continue with the current process to maintain performance

 

bar chart representing 60% vs. 54%Cervical cancer:

  • Current Performance =  60%
  • *Benchmark = 54%
  • Target = 65%

What is being done to help improve rates?

  • Running dedicated pap clinics with targeted outreach to those that are eligible with online booking options
  • Quality Improvement Project being implemented to attach marginalized population to a pap appointment
    in pursuit of health equity

*Benchmarks are calculated using the University of Toronto’s Department of
Family & Community Medicine (DFCM) averages (based on 14 academic teaching
sites), or the Toronto Central Local Health Integration Network average.

New Patients

The Family Practice Health Centre is not accepting new patients at this time. If you are in need of a primary care provider, please register with Health Care Connect. 

Healthcare Connect

Family Way Obstetrics

We are a group of family physicians with special interest, training and expertise in low-risk pregnancy and birth. We deliver approximately 300 babies every year. We are fortunate to work closely with superb nurses, obstetricians, pediatricians and anesthesiologists. This ensures access to the highest standard of care for our families.

The Family Practice Heath Centre recognizes that medical issues often arise outside of regular office hours. We offer same day appointments for urgent needs. Urgent after hours appointments are available to all registered patients of Family Practice. 

How do I know if the issue is urgent?

Examples of urgent medical concerns can include:

  • new injury
  • chest pain
  • difficulty breathing
  • new abdominal pain
  • urinary tract infections
  • a sick child
  • more than 48 hours of fever/vomiting/ diarrhea in adults

Non-urgent concerns, such as follow-ups, prescription renewals, form completion and reviewing test results should be booked during regular clinic times with your primary family physician.

If you require non-urgent medical advice outside of regular office hours, please contact the Telephone Health Advisory Service at 811. 

In an emergency, you should call 911 or go to your local hospital emergency department. 

Urgent after-hours care is available by appointment only. Appointments must be booked the same day. Appointments may be booked during regular office hours via your team secretary or during the after-hours clinic.

    • Monday to Thursday 5 p.m. – 8 p.m. (in person or telephone/video)

Call: 416-323-6060 to book an appointment.

Appointments may be booked starting Friday afternoon via your team secretary or during Saturday clinic until capacity is reached.

  • Saturday 9:00 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. (phone lines open 8:30 a.m.)

Call: 416-323-6060 to book an appointment.

We will try our best to accommodate walk-in appointments but pre-booked appointments will take precedence unless there is a triaged medical urgency.

This service is for patients seeking non-urgent medical advice when the office is closed.

Monday to Friday: 5 p.m. to 9 a.m.
Saturday and Sunday: 24 hours

Call:  811

In an emergency, you should call 911 or go to your local hospital emergency department.

If you are more than 20 weeks pregnant and have an urgent concern, please call 416-323-6400 ext. 4141 and ask to speak to the family practice OB doctor on call.

If you do not receive a call back within 30 min, please go to triage on the 15th floor of  Mount Sinai Hospital or call 911

Learn about who may be a part of your care team, how to contact them, and book online appointments.

Administrative & Support Staff

Our administration and support staff including but not limited to our clinical aides, health records team, administrative and program staff work diligently behind the scenes to ensure operations run smooth and efficiently.


Team secretary

The secretaries schedule your appointments and are responsible for validating your health card at each visit. Please advise a team secretary of changes to your address, telephone number or health card.

The secretary is usually your first line of contact when calling the Family Practice Health Centre. Team secretaries will help respond to question and assist with scheduling appointments related to your care at the clinic. 


Medical Learners/ Trainees

Women’s College Family Practice is an academic teaching site affiliated with the University of Toronto Department of Family and Community Medicine. This means that we may have learners ranging from first year medical school students, to those who have completed their family medicine residency, but are choosing to do further training.  No matter the stage, each learner will always be supervised by a family physician who will oversee your care.


Nurse

The team nurse works in collaboration with your primary care provider to deliver your care. Team nurses may provide general health advice, health care education, in addition to addressing your urgent concerns in consultation with your provider. They also provide clinical services such as immunizations, well-baby check-ups, blood pressure checks, paps, ear irrigation, wound care, and staple/suture removal.


Doctor

The family practice doctor provides and coordinates your total health care. Your doctor may be a staff physician, fellow or resident doctor.

Staff physicians

Experienced family physicians and are members of the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Toronto.

Residents

Resident doctors are licensed physicians, learning the specialty of family medicine and are supervised by staff physicians. Most residents are with us for two years; when they leave, their patients are typically reassigned to incoming residents with the same supervisor, on the same team.


Nurse Practitioner

The family practice nurse practitioner (NP) is an advanced practice nurse who specializes in primary health care. The NP, who may be your primary care provider, can assess and treat minor illnesses and monitor stable chronic diseases. The NP works independently and in collaboration with a consulting physician.


Dietitians

The family practice dietitians are available for individual counselling related to special dietary needs. Please discuss referrals with your nurse, family physician, or nurse practitioner.


Social Workers

The family practice social workers provide individual and couples’ counselling related to a variety of psychosocial issues. Please discuss referrals with your nurse, family physician or nurse practitioner.


Occupational Therapist

The family practice occupational therapist helps with specific issues around work related or repetitive injuries, and assesses and improves functioning in activities of daily living. Assessment of mobility issues and custom splinting is also offered.


Pharmacist

The family practice pharmacist is available to help answer any questions you may have about your medications. The pharmacist also works together with you and your health care team to identify, prevent and solve any issues related to your medications. Please discuss referrals with your nurse, family physician, or nurse practitioner.


Chiropodist

A Chiropodist is trained to assess, treat, and provide ongoing care of the foot. As a key member of our health care team, the chiropodist has many skills to help you get rid of foot pain, become mobile, and maintain healthy feet.


Physiotherapist

Physiotherapists help to improve or maintain function and promote mobility, physical activity, overall health, and wellness. Physiotherapy aims to enhance, or restore function of multiple body systems.  Please discuss referrals with your nurse, family physician or nurse practitioner.

We now have a secretary dedicated to appointment scheduling. If you are calling Family Practice to simply book, cancel or reschedule an appointment, you can now call (416) 323-6060, press 2 and then 1 to reach the Appointment Secretary.

We continue to add more clinicians to Online Appointment Booking! 

Please click here for more information on online appointment booking. We encourage you to take advantage of this booking option.

Red Team – 3rd Floor

Contact:
Phone: 416-323-6060
Press 3, then 1
Fax: 416-323-6350

Nurses:
Helen Chen
Sarah Lizius

Nurse Practitioner:
Lauren Scott

Doctors:
Dr. Viola Antao
Dr. Tuhina Biswas
Dr. Vivian Choo (locum for Dr. Spithoff)
Dr. Meghan Feeney 
Dr. Sumeet Gill
Dr. Ruth Heisey
Dr. Claire Murphy
Dr. Jesse Myers
Dr. Sam Nutt
Dr. Jordana Sheps
Dr. Sheryl Spithoff
Dr. Karen Wong

Blue Team – 3rd Floor

Contact:
Phone: 416-323-6060
Press 3, then 4
Fax: 416-323-6402

Nurses:
Liette Williams
Christina Szucs

Doctors:
Dr. Rob Dmytryshyn
Dr. Sejal Doshi
Dr. Stephen Holzapfel
Dr. Diana Hsiang
Dr. Deborah Levitan
Dr. Bradley Lichtblau
Dr. Aisha Lofters
Dr. Dara Maker
Dr. Melinda Wu

Green Team – 4th Floor

Contact:
Phone: 416-323-6060
Press 3, then 2
Fax: 416-323-6485

Nurses:
Dara Smiljanic
Julie de Leon
Julie Salvador

Doctors:
Dr. Onil Bhattacharyya
Dr. Danielle Martin
Dr. Vanessa Rambihar
Dr. Carrie Schram
Dr. Hemen Shukla
Dr. Cynthia Whitehead
Dr. Vivian Choo (locum for Dr. Whitehead)
Dr. Betty Chen
Dr. Noah Ivers
Dr. Carol Kitai
Dr. Laura Stratton

Yellow Team – 4th Floor

Contact:
Phone: 416-323-6060
Press 3, then 3
Fax: 416-323-6332

Nurses:
Janet Probst
Giuliana Furfaro
Rimpi Gupta

Nurse Practitioner:
Jessica Bawden

Doctors:
Dr. Ting Cai (locum for Dr. Schermbrucker)
Dr. Kymm Feldman
Dr. Batya Grundland
Dr. Susie Kim
Dr. Dominik Nowak
Dr. Nikita Patel
Dr. Ada Posner (locum for Dr. Shachar)
Dr. Jonah Schermbrucker
Dr. Orli Shachar

Allied Health Team

To contact the Allied Health team Secretary, please call: 416-323-6060 ext. 4950.

Please note that our allied health programs and services are only available to Family Practice Health Centre patients and may require a referral from your provider. Please see our Programs and Services tab for more information.

Advanced Practice Nurse

  • Maureen Haig

Chiropodists

  • Sarah Higgins
  • Alex Misiak
  • Vikaash Singh

Dietitians

  • Behnaz Abedi – Certified Diabetes Educator
  • Nicole Bourgeois – Dietitian, Health Promotor 

Occupational Therapist

  • Todd Tran

Pharmacist

  • Sameera Toenjes

Physiotherapist

  • Maria Scott Martinez

Social Worker

  • Karen Burrell
  • Chantal Simms

These programs & services are available to Family Practice patients only. Some services may require a physician referral.

For hospital services such as the pharmacy, lobby lab, wi-fi, dining options and more, please see our hospital services page.

BETTER is a FREE program that provides support to women and men ages 40-68 to take control of their health so they can prevent chronic disease, including cancer. The program offers personalized medical advice about chronic disease prevention and lifestyle modification. Women are also eligible to receive free additional counselling from a peer health coach for up to six months through the extension of the program, called BETTER Women.

Learn more about the BETTER Women Program

If interested, please contact our lead practitioner at FamilyPracticeBETTERprogram@wchospital.ca or call 416-323-6060 and speak to your team secretary.

A board-certified lactation consultant is a specially trained health care professional that supports and educates mothers in chest/breastfeeding their babies. We understand the challenges of newborn care and feeding, and provide non-judgemental support, working closely with parents to achieve their infant feeding goals.  We are trained in assisting parents with common nursing issues such as difficulties with latching, pain while nursing, and low milk production.  As part of your newborn care, we will closely monitor babies to ensure that they are gaining weight appropriately, as well as help parents plan for what to do if they are not.  Additionally, we can also support more complex lactation issues such as prevention and treatment of wounds, feeding preterm/multiples, breast/bottle refusal and alternative methods of feeding.

lactation issues such as prevention and treatment of wounds, feeding preterm/multiples, breast/bottle refusal and alternative methods of feeding.

Lastly, we offer and encourage all parents-to-be to attend our prenatal breastfeeding education classes, offered in-person and virtually at our clinic.

Please review these helpful resources before meeting our lactation consultants:

  1. Global Health Media – Breastfeeding Videos
  2. Healthlink BC – Latching Your Baby video
  3. Healthlink BC – New Parents

How to Access this Service:

A referral from your primary care provider is required.

Our Goal: The goal of this program is to provide patients living with Type 2 diabetes and pre-diabetes with self-management education and skills to live well with their condition.

How it Works: Our team is led by a Registered Dietitian-Certified Diabetes Educator. We also have a Registered Nurse and Pharmacist on our team.

We offer individual sessions to support your unique needs around managing and fitting diabetes in your lifestyle while also helping to prevent complications.

What you can expect:

Based on individual needs and goals, you will learn about:

  • Diabetes/Pre-Diabetes, target blood sugar levels
  • The role of healthy eating and physical activity
  • How to monitor your blood sugar (if applicable)
  • Diabetes medications including Insulin and other diabetes injectable medications

You will also:

  • Receive practical tips and recommendations that suit your unique needs
  • Learn how to set goals that are achievable
  • Receive resources to help achieve your goals

Your support person/ and or caregivers are also welcome to attend your individual session.

How to Access this Service: A referral from your primary care provider is required.

Our interprofessional team is made up of Chiropodists and an Occupational Therapist with an expertise in Pedorthics to help best support your foot care needs. The focus of the FCC is on conducting biomechanical foot assessments for various types of foot pain. Foot Care Centre also provides custom-made orthotics and footwear education & recommendations.

How to Access this Service?

Please contact your physician to be referred.

Services Offered

  • Nail care
  • Corn and callus removal
  • Diabetic foot assessments and education
  • Custom Orthotics – requires a referral from MD

Service Fees

FCC services are not covered by OHIP. For a list of prices, please contact the Family Practice at 416-323-6060 ext. 4950

Please note: We do not provide direct billing to insurance companies. Invoice and Manufacturing Profile will be provided to the patient to submit to their insurance for reimbursement.

For geriatric patients with serious mobility issues and/or other serious illnesses, it can be difficult or nearly impossible to leave home to see a healthcare provider. The Home Visiting Program, run by the Family Practice Health Centre (FPHC) at Women’s College Hospital aims to bring primary healthcare providers to your home. 

Am I Eligible?

To be accepted into the home visiting program, patients must be:

  • A patient of WCH FPHC
  • 75 years or older
  • Agreeable to participate in the program
  • Homebound – This includes frail seniors with complex medical, physical, functional, cognitive and social conditions that require ongoing support to remain in the community
  • Live within the home visit program catchment area:
    • M4G, M4H, M4J, M4K, M4M, M4P, M4R, M4S, M4T, M4V, M4W, M4X, M4Y
    • M5A, M5B, M5E, M5G, M5J, M5N, M5P, M5R, M5S, M5T, M5V
    • M6B, M6C, M6E, M6G, M6H, M6J, M6K, M6P, M6R, M6V

The Home Visiting Program is not for:

  • Patients requiring palliative care
  • Patients living in long-term care facilities
  • Patients who require urgent or emergent medical assessments in their homes

How can I become a Home Visiting Program Patient?

A referral from your primary care provider is required.

If you qualify, we will reach out to set-up your first home visit where an intake assessment will take place to determine acceptance into the program.

The Family Practice occupational therapist can provide holistic and client-centered support and services to address participation with everyday life activities (either living with a physical condition or a mental health issue).  The occupational therapist can provide one-on-one intervention (e.g., splinting) or through a group-based intervention (e.g., mindfulness-based groups) to prevent activity limitations and participation restrictions.

Occupational Therapist can help:

  • Chronic disease management
  • Joint protection (e.g., splinting)
  • Mobility and adaptive aids
  • Prevention of injuries and falls
  • Energy conservation
  • Mental health management (e.g., supportive counseling)
  • Group-based mindfulness interventions
  • Return to work
  • Optimize participation in self-care, employment, leisure, social and community activities

 How to Access this Service:

A referral from your primary care provider is required.

 

The Family Practice pharmacist specializes in helping you get the most benefit from your medications. The pharmacist can work with you and our care team here to make sure your medications (both prescription and non-prescription) are as safe and effective as possible.

Pharmacists can help:

  • Answer questions about your medications (e.g., medication side effects, interactions, safety in pregnancy)
  • Perform a review of your medications to make sure they are meeting your medication-related goals and communicate suggestions to our care team
  • Provide education on how to effectively and safely take your medications
  • Create an up-to-date list of your medications and share this with our care team
  • Answer questions about prescription, over the counter, herbal or natural health products

How Can I Access this Service?

One-on-one appointments (in person, video or phone) can be booked with the pharmacist by contacting your primary care provider or calling 416-323-6400 ext 4950.

Patients of the Family Practice Health Centre are now able to book an appointment with our Family Health Team Pharmacist using online booking.

Please note that these appointments should not be for urgent care matters or medication refill requests.

Physiotherapy or Physical Therapy is a health care profession anchored in movement sciences and aims to enhance, or restore function of multiple body systems; it is committed to health, lifestyle and improving quality of life.

Our physiotherapy department is part of the multidisciplinary health team at WCH-Family Practice. The focus of practice is on chronic disease self-management, disease prevention and health promotion. To access physiotherapy services, individuals must be enrolled with the Family Health Team.

The physiotherapist will help:

  • Improve or maintain function and promote mobility, physical activity, overall health, and wellness
  • Prevent disease, injury, and disability
  • Treat acute and chronic conditions, activity limitations and participation restrictions
  • Rehabilitate injuries and the effects of a disease or disability
  • Provide education and plan programs to prevent re-occurrence, re-injury, or functional decline
  • Provide individualized exercise programs and education on self-management
  • Educate patients regarding falls prevention, balance and strengthening exercise programs
  • Provide education on pre and post-natal exercise and fitness activities

Service Delivery

Once a patient is deemed eligible for the physiotherapy program, the physiotherapist will conduct an assessment, communicate a diagnosis within their scope of practice and plan a treatment program.

Some common conditions treated at Family Practice-Physiotherapy may include:

  • Acute and chronic conditions (e.g. back pain, shoulder pain, hip/knee pain)
  • Arthritis conditions (e.g. osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis)
  • Osteoporosis
  • Metabolic conditions (e.g. obesity, prediabetes, diabetes)
  • Chronic pain and fibromyalgia
  • Fall prevention
  • Neurological conditions (e.g. Parkinson’s, Multiple sclerosis)
  • Respiratory conditions (e.g COPD, asthma)
  • Cancer related pain and mobility limitations

How to Access this Service:

A referral from your primary care provider is required.

 

The Family Way Obstetrical Group at Women’s College Hospital – a group of family physicians with a special interest, training and expertise in low-to-average risk pregnancy and birth. We are accepting new prenatal patients. We guide our families through the natural process of birth, while providing the skills and expertise to deal with complications that can arise. Our approach is grounded in shared decision making in the hopes of achieving a secure and caring relationship throughout your pregnancy and an excellent birthing experience with our team.

You do not need to be a patient of the Family Practice Health Centre to join the Family Way Obstetrical Group.

Click here to learn how to become a patient

Registered Dietitians (RDs) are your healthcare professionals for food and nutrition information. At a minimum, they have a Bachelor of Science degree specializing in food and nutrition and are regulated by the College of Dietitians of Ontario.

RDs turn the science of nutrition into practical information and instructions. They can give you information you can use to make food choices that are right for you to help improve your overall health. They can support you through different stages of life and can help prevent and manage many health conditions.

Dietitians can help with:

  • Providing nutrition advice across the lifespan (from prenatal, infant and childhood nutrition, to older adults)
  • Managing Diabetes and Pre-diabetes – Provided by RD with Certified Diabetes Educator (CDE) certification
  • Cardiovascular Disease (heart disease, high cholesterol, high blood pressure)
  • Gastrointestinal Conditions (irritable bowel syndrome, celiac disease, food intolerances)
  • Weight management, including weight loss and weight gain
  • Food Sensitivities or Allergies

How to Access this Service:

A referral from your primary care provider is required.

Registered Social Workers provide many programs and services to help with your mental health.  Social workers at the Family Practice have a master’s degree in Social Work and are trained in a variety of evidenced-based psychotherapeutic modalities such as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Dialectical Behavioral Therapy, Mindfulness-Based Therapies, Emotion Focused Therapies and more.  Social Workers provide short-term Psychotherapy and supportive sessions for the following issues:

  • Depression/anxiety/other mood related issues
  • Family/relationship/ parenting issues/ major life changes
  • Chronic illness/ Adjusting to new diagnosis/ Life stages
  • Employment or School stress/issues
  • Emerging trauma symptoms
  • Referral or information on Community Resources (i.e. housing, income, community social services)

Group programs related to trauma, mindfulness meditation, peer support, cognitive therapy, emotion focused therapy, intuitive eating, sleep and coping skills are also offered.

Experienced Social Work students completing their Master of Social Work (MSW) degree are also part of our interdisciplinary care team, helping to increase capacity and access to social work services for our patients.

How to Access this Service:

A referral from your primary care provider is required.

Journey to Become Smoke Free Program

This program is designed for patients who have been contemplating becoming smoke-free and are interested in gaining some knowledge and skill to move forward with those plans.

Our goal: Our goal is to help individuals reduce or quit nicotine (smoked or vaped)

How our program works: We offer both group and one-on-one sessions. Our group sessions run bi-monthly (one introduction session, 3 follow-up sessions) over Zoom and in person. Our one-on-one sessions are ongoing and can be done through scheduled telephone, video, or in person visits. We are partnered with the CAMH’s STOP program to provide free nicotine replacement therapy (gum, inhaler, patch, lozenges) to those interested in quitting smoking or vaping.

What you can expect:

  • To explore the reasons why you smoke or vape
  • To learn strategies to help you reduce or quit smoking or vaping
  • To receive personalized advice and strategies on how you can reduce or quit
  • To receive ongoing support through your Smoke Free journey
  • To learn how to use medications to help you quit if this is right for you

How to Sign Up: You must be a patient of the WCH Family Practice. To book a one-on-one appointment or to sign-up for the next available group session, please call 416-323-6400 ext. 4950 or speak to your doctor.

Suggested Readings and Videos:

  1. “Easy Way to Stop Smoking” (Canadian edition) 2012 – By: Allen Carr (available in most public libraries)
  1. Dr. Michael Evans YouTube videos:
    “What is the Single Best Thing You Can Do to Quit Smoking?”
    “Quitting Smoking is a Journey”

Patient Resources

There are many resources available for both patients and health care professionals. The following are websites and resources that will provide the answers to many questions you may have about your health and primary care:

Family Practice Health Centre

Read the latest issue:

Winter 2023

Previous Issues:

Aging

The Advance Care Planning Ontario – This website will help Ontarians learn about Advance Care Planning (ACP).

  • ACP is conversations to help people and their substitute-decision-maker (SDM) prepare for future healthcare decisions.
  • This website will help you learn about the process, think about what’s important to you and how to involve your SDM.
  • It also contains information about Ontario law and substitute decision-making.

Test your Brain Health – A free, private and clinically researched method to help you evaluate and track your brain health.

MyCancerIQ Making a few changes to your lifestyle can go a long way towards reducing your risk of cancer. My CancerIQ is an online risk assessment tool that helps determine your cancer risk, relative to other Ontarians, and creates a personalized action plan.

Get Checked for CancerOrganized screening programs may find cancer earlier, leading to better health outcomes. Cancer screening detects pre-cancerous changes, or cancer at an early stage when there is a better chance of treating it successfully. Screening is for people who do not have any cancer symptoms.

  • Confused about COVID-19? This is an excellent resource that addresses the most common questions from the public about symptoms, safety, testing and more. Confused about COVID.
  • For more information on the COVID-19 vaccines in kids, please read this very helpful FAQ
  • Help guide your child/children through the vaccination process.

Diabetes Canada – Healthy eating, exercise, self-management tools and resources for diabetes and pre-diabetes

Government of Canada’s healthy eating guidelines, cooking tips, recipes, understanding food labels and much more:

Unlockfood.ca  – A website for information on healthy eating, recipes, meal planning, many food related topics (from infants and toddlers to pregnancy to older adults). Available in French and English.

Access a quick list of topics from their site.

Choosing Wisely Canada materials encourage clinicians and patients to start a conversation about the risks, harms, and benefits of tests and treatments. These materials are meant to help patients make smart and effective care choices.

Access Patient Resources

Hypertension Canada – Knowledge is power. Get the facts on high blood pressure and what you can do about it.

MenopauseandU – Every woman experiences menopause differently. The best way to manage your menopause experience is to learn the facts, including the benefits and risks of available therapies, as well as important health concerns to consider during this transition period.

Better Beginnings Now –  Better Beginnings Now services are available to children (prenatal – 6) who are experiencing, or may be at risk of experiencing, barriers to healthy development, and their families/caregivers.

What’s Up Walk-in Clinic – The What’s Up Walk-In (WUWI) network is Toronto’s only free, six-day-a-week mental health counselling walk-in service for infants, children, youth, young adults, and families. Therapists offer walk-in, single, solution focused sessions.

BounceBack –  A free skill-building program managed by the Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA). It is designed to help adults and youth 15+ manage low mood, depression, anxiety, stress or worry.

Calculate your approximate daily calcium intake with this interactive calcium calculator by Osteoporosis Canada

Publicly-Funded Physiotherapy: Clinic Locations – The government is investing in physiotherapy, giving 90,000 more seniors and eligible patients access to publicly funded clinic-based services in more communities across the province.

The Arthritis Rehabilitation and Education Program – The Arthritis Rehabilitation and Education Program (AREP) provides a range of treatment and education services for adults and children with arthritis. Services are free, at no cost to you. Services are funded by the Ontario Government if you have an Ontario Health Card and a confirmed diagnosis of arthritis.

  • Parenting and Behaviour Management – We all want to be good parents and caregivers, and raising children is not always easy. These pages include information and tips on common topics related to parenting.
  • Pleo –  In partnership with Strides Toronto Lead Agency, Toronto parents of children to age 25 facing mental health challenges can now join us for an 8-week online Parent Support Group, with additional support from our Parents’ Helpline.

Introducing Solids

  • Feeding Your Baby – This resource includes information to help parents and caregivers of babies six months to one year: know when their baby is ready for solid foods, how to introduce new foods and textures, foods and beverages to offer, feeding tips and more.
  • Introducing Solid Foods to Your Baby – Introducing solid foods can be an exciting time for parents and caregivers. Use these tips to help you get started.

Sleep Training

Mental Health

Best Start Feeding Your BabyA Guide to Help you Introduce Solid Foods

This guide for parents provides information about feeding their baby from six months to one year. It has information and answers questions they may have about breastfeeding and starting solid foods.

See the physicians of the Family Way Obstetrical Group answer some of the most common questions posed by patients and their families about planning pregnancy, being pregnant and giving birth.

Frequently Asked Questions

We generally do NOT call patients with test results. Appropriate followup will be arranged; please speak to your individual healthcare team. Due to the large number of patient visits (70,000/year), we discourage calling for test results.

Some tests performed over at the main hospital (76 Grenville site) will be available on myHealthRecord. However, myHealthRecord is not linked to your Family Practice chart. Health information captured at the Family Practice Health Centre (FPHC) will not be included in your myHealthRecord account.

You will also not be able to update your personal information such as medications and allergies, and request, cancel or view your FPHC appointments on myHealthRecord. Do not send any messages to your provider through My Health Record.

Click here for more information on myHealthRecords including troubleshooting.

We require 24 hours notice for the cancellation of an appointment. You may be billed for improperly cancelled or missed appointments.

We are not accepting new family practice patients at this time, however we are always accepting new obstetrics patients.

If you are looking for a family doctor, you can also register for the Healthcare Connects program by calling 1-800-445-1822 between Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m or visiting www.ontario.ca/healthcareconnect.

You can also visit our Find a Doctor page for more information.

Uninsured Services

The Ontario Health Insurance Plan (OHIP) pays for the majority of your medical care however, you may need some services that are not deemed by OHIP as medically necessary. Some examples of these uninsured services include writing sick notes, charges for missed appointments, and completing forms for daycare, insurance, legal or employment purposes. In the past, we have not always charged for these services, however this is no longer sustainable. Moving forward, patients will be charged for all uninsured services.
When fees are charged for uninsured services, they are based on the Ontario Medical Association (OMA)’s suggested fees as found in the most current edition of the OMA Physician’s Guide to Third Party and Other Uninsured Services.

Tips to avoid being charged:

  • If you are unable to make an appointment, please cancel it at least 24 hours in advance.
  • Check with your employer to verify if you really need a sick note. Frequently it is not required.
  • Check with your school/camp if a physician’s signature is required on medical forms – often it is not.
  • Check with your insurance provider or workplace to find out who is responsible for any fees before having a form completed.

While traditionally many patients would come to their family doctor once a year for an “annual physical”, there is no scientific evidence that this prevents disease or saves lives. In fact, an annual physical can actually do more harm than good! As a result, in 2012, OHIP eliminated the Annual Health Exam and replaced it with the Periodic Health Exam.

A periodic health exam is an appointment that focuses on health prevention. Lifestyle changes such as exercise, limiting alcohol, and quitting smoking have all been proven to improve your health and will be reviewed at your Periodic Health Exam. Age-appropriate cancer screening tests, required blood work (if any), and immunizations will also be reviewed. A full head to toe exam is not necessary, and instead your doctor will do a focused physical exam based on your current health. The appointment is not meant to address all your “saved up” health concerns. Patients may be asked to book a follow up appointment should they have multiple health concerns in order to comprehensively address each issue.

Periodic Health Exams are NOT required annually for most patients. Many people in their 20s may go a few years without one, while those older than 65 or with multiple medical problems may need one more frequently. Check with your primary care provider to find out what is right for you. The BETTER Women program (see below under ‘Medical Updates’ section) is a fantastic option for women ages 40 -68.
Patients should book a regular appointment if at any time they feel unwell or have an acute concern. Patients with chronic medical conditions such as high blood pressure or diabetes will have more frequent monitoring visits in addition to their Periodic Health Exam.

Please allow 5 business days for all prescription renewal requests

  • Please have your pharmacy fax the prescription repeat request directly to Family Practice. Do not call the clinic for prescription renewals.
  • An appointment is generally required for all new prescriptions or medications that have not been prescribed here previously.
  • Please be aware, if a doctor is covering for your regular physician, you may get a shorter repeat than usual.
  • Please try to renew all your regular prescriptions at your scheduled appointments.

We do our best to run on time during the day, and late arrivals make this difficult. If you arrive late for your appointment, you may be offered to wait to be seen (if time allows), or may be asked to rebook your appointment. Please leave adequate time for transportation delays, traffic and parking so that you may arrive on time.

WCH Family Practice an academic practice of health care providers who utilize a team-based approach for your health care. All of our physicians are highly skilled and fully qualified to provide primary care to patients of all ages and genders. Patients will not be allowed to transfer from their current primary care provider to another one in the clinic unless there are extenuating circumstances.