COVID Prevention in Communities Rounds

COVID-19 Community Rounds

We are hoping to create dialogue and sharing of experience and information between hospital and grass roots community advocates and health care providers to strengthen and deepen our work to fight COVID together. We will discuss evidence that can inform testing and COVID prevention in the community and we will honour diverse sources and traditions of knowledge and understanding in health and healing.

Please find resources, videos, and further information for each session below

Previous Rounds

“Exploring Vaccine Provision in Shelters: Approach and Strategy”

The provision of COVID 19 vaccines have been underway in Shelter and Congregate Living Sites across Toronto since late March 2021. Many health partners and organizations are involved in this effort, using various models, approaches and strategies to support uptake, which have resulting to a wide array of experiences and approaches in delivery. It is the goal of this conversation to highlight the voice of community partners in this vaccine rollout, explore vaccine uptake in shelters and approaches and strategies used and opportunities to learn from each other in current and future efforts.


  • Elizabeth Brioux, Fred Victor
  • Andre Officer, Christie Ossington Neighbourhood Centre
  • Pedram Mozaffari, Dixon Hall – Health Ambassador
  • Grace Richandi & Tina Kaur, Inner City Health Associates
  • Morgan Hillier, Alexa Caturay & Ameeta Mathur, Toronto Public Health
  • Holly Knowles, Meaghan Elger & Sarah Nestico, St. Michael’s Hospital
  • Jane Harrison, Anishnawbe Health Toronto
  • Raymond Macareag, Parkdale Queen West Community Health Centre

Moderated by:

Vanessa Wright, NP, Crossroads Refugee Health Clinic WCH; Clinical Lead Community Response Team, WCH
Dr. Lisa Richardson, MD, MA, FRCP, Strategic Lead in Indigenous Health
Dr. Suvendrini Lena, Neurologist & Senior Medical Advisor, Pandemic Programs, WCH

Resources from the discussion:

See a copy of the chat discussion here.

“Black Community Led Vaccination Clinics: Thinking Beyond the Pandemic”

Join us to hear three unique voices and leaders who bridge Black communities and healthcare organizations, in conversations about their vision for healing in the pandemic and beyond. In these very difficult times, this conversation will be a powerful source of inspiration.


Lydia-Joi Marshall, President, Black Health Alliance

headshot of Lydia-Joi Marshall

Sane Dube, Manager, Social Medicine and Population Health, UHN

headshot of Sane Dube

Dr. Duate Adegbite, Family Physician, Toronto Western FHT & Physician Lead, Black Health Vaccine Initiative at TAIBU Community Health Centre.

headshot of Dr. Duate Adegbite

Readings and Resources:

See a copy of the chat discussion here.

The AstraZeneca Blood Clot Issue & The Big Picture – Effects of Mass Vaccination in Israel and the UK – Science Reviewed with a Community Focus”

Moderated by:

Dr. Lisa Richardson, MD, MA, FRCP, Strategic Lead in Indigenous Health at WCH

headshot of Dr. Lisa Richardson


Dr Winder Gill, MD, FRCPC, ABIM, Internist, Clinical Immunologist and Allergist. Dr. Winder Gill’s Presentation.

Dr Suvendrini Lena, Neurologist & Senior Medical Advisor, Pandemic Progams, WCH. Dr. Suvendrini Lena’s Presentation.

headshot of Dr. Suvendrini Lena

Vanessa Wright, NP Crossroads Refugee Health Clinic WCH; Clinical Lead Community Response Team, WCH. Vanessa Wright’s Presentation.

headshot of Vanessa Wright

Suggested Readings:

“New Variants of Concern: Reviewing the Science and Understanding Community Impact”

Presenters and Topics:

Mona Loutfy MD FRCP MPH Senior Scientist and Director, Women and HIV Research Program, WCRI

Suvendrini Lena MD FRCPC MPH Senior Medical Advisor Pandemic Programs WCH

Suggested Readings:

See a link to the Presentation here.

“What We Need to Do to Keep Schools Open”

Over the last term more and more parents, fearing COVID-19 outbreaks at schools have shifted kids to virtual learning. By December, multiple schools in Toronto had been closed. How has the shift to virtual learning played out in Toronto’s hardest hit communities? Have closures impacted these communities disproportionately?

Presenters and Topics:

Lessons Learned from the fall – Sharing Learnings from Clinicians – Vanessa Wright, NP and Suvendrini Lena, MD, MPH. Vanessa and Suvendrini have worked together as co-leads of the WCH Community Response Team since the early summer of 2020, testing in shelters and schools, with a focus on community empowerment. They will present data from school testing in Toronto and interviews with school principals speaking to community perspectives on strategies urgently needed to keep schools safe.

Indigenous Health care for and by Indigenous peoples: Anishnawbe Health and Kapapamahchakwew/Wandering Spirit School, k-12 – Principal Tanya Senk. Tanya Senk is a Metis/Cree/Saulteaux educator/writer/researcher/community leader/speaker and lecturer. She is currently the Principal of Kapapamahchakwew- Wandering School, K-12 and the Centrally Assigned Principal in Indigenous Education through the Urban Indigenous Education Centre, Toronto District School Board. The Urban Indigenous Education Centre provides: ‘Wholistic’ wrap around supports for Indigenous Students; Community Engagement; Partnerships; Professional Learning in all sectors across the system, including Educators, Administrators, Superintendents and Trustees, Research and Innovation; Programming and Curriculum Development. Tanya has also been a Course Director at York University in the Faculty of Education, Teacher Education Programs. As a PhD candidate at York University, her research interests include decolonizing and Indigenizing education.

photograph of Tanya Senk

See articles and resources discussed below:

“COVID Vaccines – Ethics & Politics of Vaccine Distribution and Uptake”

What are the roots of vaccine distrust in Black and Indigenous and Communities of Colour? How do we engage together to ensure access and safety for our communities?


  • Dr. Mike Anderson, Regional Indigenous Cancer Lead, Cancer Care Ontario
  • Liben Gebremikael, Executive Director – TAIBU Community Health Centre
  • See a summary of the discussion and Zoom chat here.

See articles and resources discussed below:

“COVID Vaccines – Participant -Driven Question & Answer Session.”

A chance for community leaders and workers to continue to discuss COVID-19 vaccines questions with each other and infectious disease expert, Dr. Mona Loutfy.

As vaccines are rolled out in our communities what do we need to know as community health advocates and care providers?

See resources that were shared and discussed below:


  • Download the presentation (.pdf) here.


Additional Resources:

“COVID Vaccines – Are they effective? Are they safe? What does the data show us.”

A session to provide a clear, detailed, and unbiased review of the data on vaccine trials for the lead COVID vaccines (Pfizer, Moderna and Oxford/Astra Zeneca).


  • Dr. Mona Loutfy, Women’s College Hospital Senior Scientist and Director, Women and HIV Research Program, Women’s College Research Institute, Staff Physician, Women’s College Hospital, Professor, Department of Medicine, University of Toronto
  • Dr. Winder Gill, Specialist in Clinical Immunology and Allergy

2020 Rounds:

” Mobile and Pop up Testing: What Works?”

Session slides in .pdf

  • Cheryl Prescod, Executive Director, Black Creek Community Health Centre
  • Michelle Westin, Senior Analyst – Planning, Quality and Risk, Black Creek Community Health Centre
  • Harvey Manning, Director of Programs & Services, Anishnawbe Health Toronto

Read about their groundbreaking work here: