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Office of the Patient Experience (Patient Relations)

If you have been cared for and discharged from our emergency department, or one of several acute inpatient units at our Bayview campus, you may receive an email survey link. If you choose to participate in this survey, your advice and feedback will help inform the care and services we provide to future patients and families. Learn more.

We welcome feedback about your Sunnybrook experience such as compliments, concerns and questions. This could be related to medical care or the general experience at the hospital. You may have heard the term Patient Relations, Patient Advocacy and/or Patient Ombudsman. Sunnybrook’s Office of the Patient Experience serves the role of these functions.


We welcome you to share your positive experiences about you or a family member's time here at Sunnybrook. We know being in hospital can be difficult and so a compliment or kind word is meaningful for staff to hear.


You, your family, your significant other or your substitute decision-maker have the right to tell us when you believe there is an opportunity for improvement. If the staff have been unable to help address and/or resolve your concerns, you are welcome to contact the Office of the Patient Experience.

If you contact us with a complaint, please be assured the healthcare or service you are receiving will not be negatively affected in any way. 

What information do I need to share when submitting my complaint or compliment?

  • The nature of your complaint/compliment – What happened?
    • Short description of your experience
  • The name(s) of the person(s) involved and their role – Who is involved? Full names are helpful.
    • Patient's first and last name (as it appears on their health card)
    • Your first and last name (if you are not the patient)
    • Sunnybrook staff involved, and their role
  • When and where the issue happened – Specifics and details lead to a more effective outcome.
    • Date and time
    • Sunnybrook campus, unit, department and/or clinic
  • If you are not the patient, confirmation the patient is aware of concerns brought forward, or confirmation you are the substitute decision maker. This is in keeping with provincial legislation which protects personal health information.
    • Specify your relationship to the patient
  • Contact information
    • How and where would you like to be contacted?

Generally, what can I expect when I bring forward a complaint?

» Our complaints process explained in five steps

View a plain-text version of the infographic

The complaints process at Sunnybrook

How our complaints process works, explained in 5 steps

  1. Patient, family, and visitor complaints can be made in person or by phone, letter, email or fax.
  2. Patient consent is required prior to reviewing a complaint.
  3. A Patient Experience Advisor will collaborate with the health care team or department(s) and review relevant hospital documents.
  4. The complaint is reviewed with supervisor/manager/physician to facilitate.
  5. The patient/family/SDM is contacted in response to the complaint.

The Office of the Patient Experience (OPE) can also help with

  1. Positive Feedback – we collect and share your compliments with staff, supervisors, physicians and Senior Leadership
  2. Consultations – we will help discuss, review and provide advice about patient experience issues you may be having on your unit or in your department
  3. Coaching – we will develop customer service training sessions to meet your needs
  4. Support – we will attend or facilitate a family meeting or connect with a patient/family in a department or on a unit as needed
  5. Initiatives – we will assist with your team’s patient experience improvement projects
  6. Navigation – we will help with general questions you may have about your Sunnybrook care pathway and to help understand the Ontario health system

I have lost a personal item

Sunnybrook is not responsible for patient and visitor belongings. Please do not bring valuables into the hospital — this includes, but is not limited to, cash, jewelry, keys, electronic devices, watches, belts, clothing, footware, etc. We understand a hospital visit is often unplanned. Be sure to pass your valuables to a friend or family member for safekeeping while you are in the hospital.

For assistive devices such as glasses, dentures, hearing aids, mobility devices, etc., while we are also not responsible for their safekeeping, we have tips to ensure they make it home with you or your loved one:


  • Label your personal belongings — for example, glasses, dentures, hearing aids, mobility devices, etc. — whenever possible. That way, if your lost property is found it can be returned to you.
  • Check with your denture provider about the options available for labeling dentures.
  • Bring an appropriate storage container for your assistive devices and ensure it can be accessed easily.
  • If you are a caregiver for a patient or resident that is confused and at risk for losing personal belongings, discuss the risk with your loved one’s care providers and the actions that can be taken to reduce the risk.
  • If you notice a personal belonging is missing, report it immediately and ask about what can be done to locate the item. Please feel most welcome to contact our office as well and we will follow up.

Did you give small items to our Security team for safekeeping?
Contact our Security team in CG-03, or by calling 416-480-6100 ext. 64589 to retrieve your belongings.

Frequently asked questions

Please choose a campus below to view contact information

Bayview Campus (2075 Bayview Ave.), St. John’s Rehab (285 Cummer Ave.), & Reactivation Care Centre (200 Church St.)

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*Please read "What Information to I need to Share" above before submitting email


Contact Irene Denzil, Administrative Assistant: 416-480-4940

Our offices are open between 8:30 a.m. and 4:00 p.m., Monday to Friday.

If you are calling outside of these hours, please leave a message with your name and contact information.

Your call will be returned on our next business day.


Office of the Patient Experience
Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre
2075 Bayview Avenue, Room C161
Toronto, ON M4N 3M5

*Please read "What Information to I need to Share" above before sending mail

Veterans Centre

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Contact the Office of the Resident and Family Experience

Our offices are open between 8:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m., Monday to Friday.






Office of the Resident & Family Experience
Sunnybrook Veterans Centre
2075 Bayview Avenue, Room LG05h
Toronto, ON M4N 3M5

Holland Centre (43 Wellesley St. East)

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Our offices are open between 8:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m., Monday to Friday.



*Please read "What Information to I need to Share" above before submitting email




The Social Work Office/ Office of the Patient Experience
Holland Centre
Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre
43 Wellesley Street East
Toronto, ON M4Y 1H1

*Please read "What Information to I need to Share" above before sending mail

View our patient experience protocol policy


Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre (Sunnybrook) is committed to ensuring a consistent and transparent process is followed when reviewing complaints and concerns from patients/residents, families and visitors. Addressing complaints and concerns will be done in keeping with the organization's core values of excellence, collaboration, accountability, respect, and engagement.


Complaint/Concern: refers to dissatisfaction and/or a worry or anxiety with the care or service received.

Compliments: positive feedback about a patient's experience in relation to a specific staff member and/or health care team where the patient/visitor would like the staff member and/or team to be recognized.

Intervention: refers to situations that require quick attention and may relate to a concern, complaint or request for assistance.

OPE: Office of the Patient Experience
(In the Veterans Centre, this role is fulfilled through the Manager, Office of the Resident & Family Experience and Safety).

Patient/Resident: this includes the patient's and/or resident's Substitute Decision Maker. At Sunnybrook, those residing in the Veterans Centre are referred to as residents.

Point of Service: the unit, clinic, department or physician's office where a complaint/concern/compliment originates.

Resolution: a complaint is considered resolved when all efforts to seek resolution with a patient and/or family have been exhausted. This is independent of the patient/family’s satisfaction level.

Retrospective Review: complaints that require a review about previous care or service. OPE will review concerns within 24 months of the incident date.

Substitute Decision Maker (SDM): An individual selected or appointed, in accordance with the Health Care Consent Act, for the purpose of making healthcare decisions, including consent to treatment and admission to a care facility on an incapable patient's behalf.


In order to protect patient privacy, OPE requires the consent (note: verbal consent is acceptable) of the patient before assistance can be provided. Sunnybrook maintains zero tolerance for any retaliation against those who bring a complaint forward. If examples of retaliation are brought forward, OPE will work with members of the Senior Leadership Team, Senior Medical Leaders and Human Resources to address these issues.


Sunnybrook encourages open communication with all members of the health care team. Should concerns arise, we recommend following these 3 steps:*

Step 1: When an issue arises, please share these concerns as soon as possible with a member of your health care team. All staff, physicians and volunteers are here to help resolve your concerns and answer questions.

Step 2: If your concern remains unresolved, please ask to speak to a Manager or Supervisor. At Sunnybrook, on a Patient Care Unit, there is a Charge Nurse/Team Leader and a Patient Care Manager. In outpatient clinics, ask to speak to the supervisor or manager.

Step 3: If your concerns still remain unresolved, OPE can be contacted to assist. Assistance can include: mediation, if the patient specifically requests our presence or presence in a family meeting.


Should you receive a complaint directly (via email, telephone, letter, in person), we recommend following these 3 steps:*

Step 1: Bring the concern to the attention of the appropriate supervisor, manager or physician.

Step 2: Acknowledge the concern in a timely manner. This can be done by email, telephone, letter or in-person.

Step 3: Consult OPE any time for additional support through concern acknowledgement, review and resolution process

*This process is a guideline, and can be adapted to meet the individual needs of the situation.



Complaints received by the Office of the Patient Experience (In the Veterans Centre – Office of the Resident & Family Experience and Safety) will be reviewed by a Patient Experience Advisor.

The Office of the Patient Experience will acknowledge receipt of a complaint within three business days. Time frames for resolving the complaint will vary depending on the immediacy of the issues, complexity, and number of people involved, for example.

If a complaint is provided anonymously, feedback to the complainant will not be possible.

There are situations that may require OPE to escalate a complaint to Senior Leadership.

All feedback received in the Office of the Patient Experience is collected in a database. This is to ensure documentation and transparency of patient, family and visitor feedback.


Patient Experience Advisors will facilitate coaching sessions to improve customer service skills, provide consultation and guidance and will assist in committee and project work.


Appendix 1: Office of the Patient Experience Location and Hours of Service

Assistance from the OPE is available Monday to Friday during business hours.

After hours, complaints/concerns that require immediate attention may be forwarded to the Shift manager on duty through Communications. Complaints/concerns that do not require immediate attention may be left on the voice mail and/or written complaints emailed/mailed/dropped off to the applicable PEA.

Location Telephone Room Address
Holland Centre 416-967-8566 Room 828B

43 Wellesley St. East, Room 828B Toronto, ON M4Y 1H1

Bayview Campus* (excluding Veterans Centre)


C Wing, 1st Floor, Room C161

2075 Bayview Ave, C161 Toronto, ON M4N 3M5

Bayview Campus, Veterans Centre


L Wing, Ground Floor, Room LG05h

2075 Bayview Ave., LG05h Toronto, ON M4N 3M5

St. John’s Rehab 416-480-4940

C Wing, 1st Floor, Room C161

2075 Bayview Ave, C161 Toronto, ON M4N 3M5

Reactivation Care Centre 416-480-4940

C Wing, 1st Floor, Room C161

2075 Bayview Ave, C161 Toronto, ON M4N 3M5

Appendix 2: Patient Concerns Process Flow Chart

View the patient concerns process flow chart »