Message from the President – September 10, 2021
It can’t be that fall is almost here but the warm days are already ceding to cooler evenings. On the upside, no more swatting flying insects and finding bugs in your beverages. I am past the stage of children starting school but thinking about those of you who are in the midst of managing and wish you only the best for the year ahead.
A staff member from our Genetics Lab dropped in the Foundation Office last week and was asking if we had “any more of those polka dot masks” from 2020. As you may recall, these were a big hit, launching our Mask Up campaign and raising funds for North York General. She told me that it is the only mask her son will wear and he would love another for the start of school. We managed to find one and we happily gave it to her and I think it made both our days. I share this because a year ago, I couldn’t imagine that we would still need masks as part of the school routine or going to the shops or a restaurant. But here we are, masks still in place, making steady progress on vaccine rates and really hoping this 4th wave doesn’t knock us all back.
What is next with COVID-19 is a question I get asked because I work for a hospital. I am no more informed than you, which is why I really value forums like House Calls – a virtual conversation with our community. I am not going to fib, I am ZOOMED OUT but there still remain many questions about what the future will hold for school, travel, the Delta variant surges, boosters, hospitalizations, whether COVID is here to stay, the mental health crisis and protecting all vulnerable populations, to name a few.
That’s why I urge you to jump on your computer on September 14 from 7-8 pm for an engaging conversation with three of our exceptional physicians, moderated by Megan Ogilvie, health reporter at the Toronto Star. You can be part of the discussion by asking questions in advance or live during the event.
Get your legs out for North York General
We all need a break from our screens (big and small) which is why I hope you take part in what has become a favourite with our hospital staff and our community: Rally for North York General. We can’t have this on site at the hospital as we have in the past, but we are holding Rally over Thanksgiving weekend where you can walk or run 1K, 5K or 10K wherever you are to support the hospital that means so much to us all.
I hope you will #Rally4NYGH by joining a team, participating individually, or by making a donation. Funds raised will support the expansion of the Charlotte & Lewis Steinberg Emergency, the hospital’s highest priority needs, and the Gulshan & Pyarali G. Nanji Orthopaedic and Plastics Centre.
Our foundation team is excited to take part again this year under our team name ‘Not Fast, Just Furious’. I completed all 3 distances at the same time last year and I hope to do the same if the weather holds!!
Marking a successful Chinese Radiothon
For the first time on August 19, we partnered with A1 Chinese Radio AM 1540 for a Chinese Radiothon to support our Emergency Department expansion. It was a roaring success and we are so grateful for the support of the station, the DJs, our sponsors and many, many members of the Chinese community who helped raise over $210,000. The all-day event featured interviews with NYGH doctors, patients and families, as well as an evening concert the following day on A1 Chinese Radio’s YouTube Channel and Facebook page.
As we shift to a new season and buckle up for what lies ahead in the coming weeks and months, I hope you and your families stay healthy and safe. I’m grateful that you continue to stand with us to support the hospital and the incredible health care team that make #NorthYorkGeneralStrong. We couldn’t do it without you.
President & CEO