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Patient Health and Safety

A Guide for Patients

Everyone at Ontario Shores Centre for Mental Health Sciences (Ontario Shores) is committed to ensuring a safe and healing environment for our patients. We invite you, your family, your friends and the community to get involved in enhancing patient care.

Be Active in Your Recovery

  • Make decisions with your treatment team
  • Ask questions and seek clarification
  • Discuss your preferences, desired goals, values, strengths and concerns
  • Talk about your story
  • Do not hesitate to inform the team when you are distressed or feeling unwell
  • If you need an interpreter, ask for one
  • Tell your treatment team if you have someone who can support you should you become more ill
  • Inpatients, please wear your ID bracelet at all times
  • Inpatients, please have your photograph taken upon admission and update it regularly

Learn About Your Medication

  • Learn what your medication looks like, its purpose, when to take it and its side-effects
  • Report side-effects immediately
  • Alert your doctor, nurse or pharmacist if you are taking over-the-counter drugs, vitamins and medications from home
  • Tell your treatment team if you have food or drug allergies

Protect Yourself from Infection

  • Always clean your hands with soap and water or use hand sanitizers
  • Cough or sneeze into a tissue or into your sleeve
  • Practice good hygiene
  • Get the flu shot
  • Do not share cigarettes, utensils or coffee cups

Maintain a Healthy Body

  • Get plenty of rest and exercise
  • Get a regular check-up
  • Brush and floss your teeth regularly
  • Eat a balanced diet and drink plenty of water
  • Practice safe sex
  • Wear sunscreen

Personal Safety

  • Seek help immediately, or call for staff if you find yourself in an unsafe situation or if someone approaches you in a manner that makes you uncomfortable
  • Identify situations with your recovery team that make you sad, anxious, angry or frightened, and discuss alternative ways to reduce your distress in advance
  • Discuss patient safety issues with your treatment team or at weekly meetings on your unit if applicable 
  • Read safety information
  • Share safety tips with other patients and staff
  • Help others be safe

Fire Safety and Smoking

  • Ontario Shores is a smoke-free environment
  • Please do not smoke anywhere inside or outside of Ontario Shores
  • Ask you treatment team about our smoking cessation program
  • If there is a fire, listen to evacuation instructions
  • Inatients, participate in monthly fire drills

Prevent Falls

  • Wear proper footwear
  • Wear no-slip socks
  • Use grab bars and assistive devices
  • Tell your treatment team about previous falls, medical problems, seizures and/or substance abuse
  • Tell your treatment team if you have dizziness, blurred vision or feel light-headed
  • Wear weather appropriate footwear outside
  • No bare feet on Ontario Shores premises
  • Inform staff immediately of spills or foreign objects on the floor

Inpatients - Protect Your Valuables

  • It is recommended that valuables are sent home 
  • Deposit your valuables and/or cash in the Business Office
  • Ontario Shores is responsible for valuables placed in the Business Office, located in Building 5, Level 3
  • Secure all other personal belongings in your cupboard

Community Living

Prior to discharge, you and your treatment team will develop:

  • A community living transition plan
  • Relapse prevention strategies
  • A crisis plan

When you are ready to return home, please ensure you understand what you need to know to keep you well.


Ask Questions

The following staff are pleased to offer you assistance:

  • Your Recovery Team
  • Your Clinical Manager
  • Your Administrative Director
  • Your Medical Director

For further help you may also call the Patient Safety Leader at 905.430.4055 ext. 6019 or the Director of Risk and Patient Safety, ext. 6764


Safety is Important to Us

Ontario Shores is committed to the health, safety and wellness of our patients, families, staff, volunteers and visitors. 

Safety is one of our core values and Ontario Shores incorporates safety into everything we do. Ontario Shores provides leadership to advance the safety and quality within our organization as well as throughout the mental health care system.

At Ontario Shores, we have a number of initiatives to enhance safety across the organization:

  • Daily safety huddles
  • Recovery Rounds
  • Safe Management Group Training
  • Seclusion and Restraint Minimization
  • Managing relationships through an Interprofessional Collaborative Recovery Model
  • SafeWards model of care
  • Annual Risk Assessments
  • Joint Health and Safety Committee
  • Workplace Violence Prevention Committee
  • Emergency preparedness, accessibility and WHMIS education for staff
  • Increased number of security cameras and security patrol

Our Annual Patient Safety Plan

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