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SickKids

Media Relations

All media inquiries and requests for media interviews, patient information or hospital information are coordinated through the SickKids Communications & Public Affairs team. 

Media relations policies

As a publicly funded health-care institution, SickKids is committed to keeping the public informed about the organization’s activities, while also upholding our responsibility to protect the privacy and confidentiality of our patients, families and staff.

All SickKids-related inquiries from news media and external organizations must go through Communications & Public Affairs. These may include requests for information, photos or videos, podcasts, as well as interviews with staff, volunteers, patients and families (onsite or virtual).

Media onsite

Members of the media who wish to come to the SickKids campus must submit requests to the Communications & Public Affairs team in advance. Consideration will be given to the scope of the requested visit (including photo/video shoots), potential disruption to clinical or research activities, and any other relevant factors that may impact SickKids operations at the time of the request.

A representative from Communications & Public Affairs must accompany all members of the media and photography/film crews while at SickKids.

Release of patient information

SickKids is committed to the privacy of our patients, families and staff. All media inquiries pertaining to patients at SickKids – including patient information, condition reports, interviews with patients, families and/or the patient’s clinical team – must be directed to Communications & Public Affairs. Information will not be released without express consent from the patient and/or the patient’s parent or legal guardian.

Patient condition report definitions

If consent has been given, a one-word condition report may be released to media. All North American hospitals use the same one-word condition reports:

  • Good: Vital signs such as pulse, temperature and blood pressure are stable and within normal limits. Patient is conscious and comfortable. The outlook for recovery is good to excellent and the patient may soon be discharged.
  • Fair: Vital signs give no cause for concern, but the patient may be uncomfortable or have minor complications. The patient is conscious, and has a favourable outlook.
  • Serious: Acutely ill, but improvement is possible. Vital signs may be unstable or not within normal limits (if appropriate, patient may be described as “serious, but stable”).
  • Critical: Questionable outlook. Vital signs are unstable or not within normal limits. There are major complications; death may be imminent.

Communications & Public Affairs contacts

During regular business hours (Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.):

Communications & Public Affairs Department
Nelson Paiva, Communications Coordinator
Phone: 416-813-5058
nelson.paiva@sickkids.ca

Media inquiries should be directed to:
Jessamine Luck
Senior Communications Advisor
jessamine.luck@sickkids.ca

Sarah Warr
Senior Communications Advisor
sarah.warr@sickkids.ca

Suzanne Gold
Manager, External Communications
suzanne.gold@sickkids.ca

Outside of regular business hours or on weekends/holidays:

Phone SickKids Locating at 416-813-7500 to have a member of Communications & Public Affairs paged.

Our latest news

September 21, 2021

Garry Hurvitz donates $50 million to SickKids in support of paediatric brain and mental health

A transformative gift of $50 million donated by Garry Hurvitz to SickKids Foundation was announced today, unveiling the Garry Hurvitz Centre for Brain & Mental Health and The Garry Hurvitz Centre for Community Mental Health.

Peter Gilgan Centre for Research and Learning exterior

September 17, 2021

SickKids among top three paediatric health-care centres worldwide in Nature Index rankings

SickKids also named top Canadian health-care institution in high-quality research.

September 8, 2021

SickKids’ Dr. Zulfiqar Bhutta awarded 2021 Roux Prize for public health achievement

Dr. Zulfiqar Bhutta was named the recipient of the 2021 Roux Prize, recognized for his research and public policy contributions to global maternal and child health and nutrition.

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