Veterans Program
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Frequently asked questions

What is the referral process for new residents to the Sunnybrook Veterans Centre?

The Veterans Centre provides long term care to eligible Canadian war veterans. To determine eligibility and to make an initial application, please contact Veterans Affairs Canada (VAC) directly at 1-866-522-2122 and ask to speak with the Veteran Service Agent in the Toronto Area Office responsible for Sunnybrook. Applications for placement can be sent from Veterans Affairs Canada via regular mail, fax or picked up in person from any VAC area office or the VAC Sunnybrook area office located in K-Wing.
Completed applications may be faxed, mailed (information available on the cover page of application) or dropped off in person to the Sunnybrook area office in K-Wing.

When eligibility and the Sunnybrook application package has been received and processed, VAC will inform the Sunnybrook Admissions Manager and unit where the Veteran will be admitted. Wait time for a bed is variable, depending on the unit and the type of care required.

***Please note that the Sunnybrook Veterans Centre is not part of the LHIN facility choice list for long term care placement. All applications must go through Veterans Affairs Canada.


How are rooms assigned in the Veterans Centre?

Each resident’s care needs are reviewed on admission to best match each resident to one of our care units. In the Veterans Centre there are mostly shared (two and three bed rooms) as well as some single rooms. The room that you will live in is based on your needs as determined by the care teams as well as room availability. As care needs change over time, residents may need to move to another room, either on the same unit or to another care unit.


Is it possible to pay an additional fee for a private or semi-private room?

No, rooms are assigned on the basis of health need. There is no opportunity to purchase preferred accommodation such as a semi-private or private room.


What is the cost?

The monthly rate is a co-payment that is determined by Veteran and Veterans Affairs Canada.


What should residents bring with them when they move into the Veterans Centre?

Residents should bring toiletries such as body wash, body lotion, deodorant, toothbrush, toothpaste, denture cleaning tablets, mouthwash, facial tissue, nail clippers, hair brush or comb and an electric shaver.

Please ensure that you bring an adequate supply of clothing. All clothing should be machine washable and items that are easy to put on and take off. You will also need to bring a twin size comforter, books, personal photos, a few wall pictures, wall calendar, a radio and a television. We encourage the use of personal head phones for TV and radio use to reduce noise for other residents. Linens, blankets, pillows and towels are provided.

A bed, dresser, bedside table, and chair are provided. Due to limited space, we do not have space for additional furniture. For safety concerns please do not bring: irons, kettles, microwaves, electric blankets, space heaters, floor rugs, candles or room scents (spray or plug in). We also recommend that you do not bring large sums of money or valuable items that cannot be replaced.


Who will be able to help me?

Your Care Team will include the Patient Care Manager (PCM), Advanced Practice Nurse (APN), Staff Nurses, Physician, Pharmacist, Recreation Therapist, Social Worker, Registered Dietitian, Chaplain and support staff. Depending on your needs, you may also be seen by Physiotherapy, Occupational Therapy, Audiology, Speech-Language Pathology and Creative Arts Therapists, who will assess you and provide treatments to meet your specific goals. In addition, you have access to our Dental Clinic as well as basic and advanced foot care as needed. Our volunteers can assist and support your attendance at our various activities and programs. All team members work together with you to help you achieve your best possible life experience here in the Veterans Centre.

We value Residents and their families as Partners in Care. We welcome your input to help us understand your care needs. We offer family conferences with the care team annually and as needed. We also encourage you and your family to visit the Resource Centre in the Office of the Resident and Family Experience for helpful information. Residents may wish to attend monthly Residents Council meetings. We also welcome your family members to attend on-unit community meetings as well as the monthly Veterans Centre Family Advisory Council.


How can you help us get to know you?

When you arrive at the Veterans Centre, we will want to start getting to know you. We will want to learn about your health and what is most important to you. It may be helpful to think about the following questions before you arrive:
What is your life’s story: your experiences, your family & friends, your hobbies? What are your likes and dislikes?
What are your fears and concerns? What do you hope your life experience will be in the Veterans Centre?


When are visiting hours?

Visiting hours are between 10:30 a.m. and 8:30 p.m. Please consult with the nursing staff to discuss any special circumstances.


How do you arrange telephone service?

Each resident or their family is responsible for coordinating private telephone service by contacting Bell Canada directly or Rogers. Phone charges, bills and installation fees are the responsibility of the resident. If you have a hearing, speech, vision or other physical disability, please contact Bell Accessibility Call Centre. They can provide information about special equipment available to assist you with telephone use.


How do you arrange television service?

Basic cable TV service is provided free of charge. Additional specialty channels are available by calling Rogers. Residents and/or their family are responsible for specialty channel purchases. Please note that there are guidelines regarding the appropriate use of televisions on all units. In an effort to keep noise to a minimum it is suggested that headphones be worn by residents sharing a room.


How are meals offered?

Shortly after arrival to the Veterans Centre, a Food Services Supervisor will meet with each resident and/or substitute decision-maker to discuss food preferences according to specific dietary needs.

For residents living in L-Wing on the Ground, First and Third Floors meals will be served in the dining room located at the north end of each unit. Meal times and daily & weekly menus are posted outside each dining room.

For residents living on all units in K-Wing and on the Second Floor of L-wing, a tray service model is offered. Residents can enjoy their meals in their room or the dining room. Scheduled meal times are provided by the nursing staff.

Sunnybrook Food Services and Aramark Healthcare Food Services meet quarterly with both Residents’ Council and the Family Advisory Council to share new menu items for tasting and to give feedback. The four week menu system offers fresh, flavourful food and in-house items from scratch cooking to provide optimum nutrition.


How do residents become involved in recreation and creative arts therapies?

Various recreation and creative arts therapy programs and activities are available to residents each weekday, evening and on weekends. These activities improve the quality of life of residents. Sunnybrook’s team of professionals consists of recreation therapists, recreation therapy assistants, art therapists, horticultural therapists and music therapists. Each unit has a designated therapist who will be in touch with each resident upon their arrival to discuss his or her interests and needs.


What kinds of daily activities can residents expect to take part in?

Warrior’s Hall (K-wing) offers residents a place to congregate and enjoy a variety of entertainment and special events and lectures. Coffee and tea are served while these events are occurring, at 10:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. Evening entertainment is offered at 6.30 p.m. The Royal Canadian Legion & Ladies Auxiliary Games Room located in K-wing has a variety of games for residents and their visitors. Residents can enjoy pool, air hockey, chess, darts and a variety of board games. In addition, there are three computers in the Games Room for residents to use at their leisure. Activities also occur on the resident care units, in music and art therapy studios, and outside in the beautifully maintained garden areas.


How do residents travel on outings?

Each month there are approximately thirty planned outings for residents such as trips to the shopping mall, legion halls, sporting events and theatre shows. There are two buses designated for planned outings: The Legionnaire and Freedom for AlI. These buses were generously donated by the Royal Canadian Legion.


What are resident food and travel passes?

All residents in L-wing, K-wing and the Dorothy Macham Home are required to carry with them a personalized Food And Travel Pass that identifies their needs and concerns about food and drinks. This pass is used at all hospital-sponsored functions at the Veterans Centre or on recreation therapy outings in the community.


May a resident smoke?

The grounds of Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, including the Veterans Centre, are designated as a smoke-free environment for all visitors and staff. However, there are two designated smoking areas for residents in the Veterans Centre. Veteran residents must complete a Smoking Assessment for safety and follow the smoking policies in effect.


May a resident drink alcoholic beverages?

There is an alcohol policy in place. When residing on the physical support units, a resident may have alcohol at their bedside. They must be capable of serving themselves and drinking responsibly. There is no alcohol permitted on the secured units for cognitively impaired residents. The Blythwood Social Club is located in the basement of K-wing (KB 21) for residents and their visitors. Residents will be served after presenting their Food and Travel Pass. Hours of operation are from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m., 6 days a week (closed on Wednesdays).


Can a resident bring a power scooter?

Residents may bring their own power scooters but they are required to undergo a training process and pass an annual driving assessment arranged by Occupational Therapy. Power mobility devices are not permitted on cognitive support units.


Are pets allowed?

Residents are not permitted to bring pets with them. However, family pets are permitted to visit. Please consult with the nursing staff ahead of time. Pets are not permitted in any of the main indoor common areas. Families are requested to keep their pets on a leash at all times and to clean up after them. A pet therapy program is offered at the Veterans Centre through Recreation Therapy. Information regarding this is available on resident care units.


Is there a cafeteria nearby?

Sunny’s Cafeteria is located between L-Wing and K-Wing on the ground floor. Hours: Monday to Friday 7:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. and weekends/holidays from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Other food outlets located on the Sunnybrook campus include: M-Wing Food Court (Second Cup, Swiss Chalet and Extreme Pita) located near the main entrance of the hospital. Hours: Seven days a week from 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.

Harlequin’s Cafeteria is located in E-Wing on the first floor. Hours: 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Tim Horton’s in C-Wing is located on the first floor. Hours: Monday to Friday 7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. A second Tim Horton’s outlet is located in H-Wing on the ground floor. Hours: Monday to Friday 7:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.


How do residents do their laundry?

Residents laundry will be labeled free of charge upon admission and laundry services are provided at no extra cost. Please use the Labeling Drop Box located outside room LG05. Labeling forms are available there. The white copy of the form goes into the bag with the clothing to be labeled and the yellow copy is to be returned to the unit. Unit staff will help complete the forms or drop off clothing at the drop box for those who are unable to do so. There is also a washer and dryer located on several units if residents/family want to wash their own clothes.


Is there a bank nearby?

The Resident Accounts Office is located on the ground floor of K-Wing. Banking services such as petty-cash accounts may be setup here. Parking permits can also be renewed here. Hours: Monday to Friday 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. (closed daily from 12:00 noon to 1:00 p.m.) An automated banking machine is located on the ground floor of L-Wing.


Is there a place for residents to get their hair cut?

The Barbershop located in K-Wing is available to residents, their families and staff for haircuts and a shave. Hours: Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Drop-ins welcome. Please note the Barbershop is closed on Tuesdays for women’s hair services. Room service is also available by request. Please call 647-802-3202 to arrange.

Haircuts on Wheels offer hair care services for female Veterans every Tuesday from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. by appointment. Appointments can be made directly by the resident, family and/or staff by calling 416-460-0513. Bedside service is available on other days of the week in consultation with the hair stylist.


Is there a convenience store nearby?

The Artisan Marketplace gift shop is located on the ground floor of K-wing. Clothing, gifts, toiletries, greeting cards, stamps, and confectionary are available here. Unique crafts made by the residents are also available for purchase. Hours: Open seven days a week from 10:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. There is also another gift shop located in M-Wing near the main entrance of the hospital.


Is there a library in the Veterans Centre?

A Toronto Public Library branch is located on the ground floor of K-wing. Books, magazines and DVDs / videos may be borrowed as in other public libraries. It is open to all Monday to Friday 9:00 to 5:00 p.m. (closed between 12:30 p.m. and 1:30 p.m.) Call ext. 2624 to speak to the librarian.


What is the Snoezelen room?

Created for individuals living with dementia, the Snoezelen room is located on the ground floor of L-wing, room LG 050. It is a safe and non-threatening environment in which residents can relax and stimulate their sense of sight, hearing, touch and smell. Residents do this at their own pace and direction. The room is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week for residents accompanied by a health professional, family member, caregiver or volunteer. Please contact the recreation therapist on your unit regarding an informative in-service on how to use the equipment before your first visit.


What is the role of companions?

Some residents enjoy having a hired companion who provides one-to-one social interaction and may accompany the resident to off-unit activities. A hired Companion is a privately funded employee of a Resident and/or their Substitute Decision Maker. If you are planning to hire a companion, please inform your unit Social Worker who will review our Privately Contracted Companions Policy with you. Please consider communication skills of any companion when hiring.


What is the role of volunteers?

Volunteers play a valuable role in supporting and enhancing the care and quality of life of Residents at the Veterans Centre. All people wishing to become a volunteer are required to follow an application process that includes but is not limited to an interview, reference check, orientation and a training process. Individuals interested in volunteering at the Veterans Centre may contact the Volunteer Resource Department at 416.480.4129. If you have a family member living at the Veterans Centre, your placement will be in another area of the hospital other than the Veterans Centre.


Is there wireless access?

Wireless access is available for residents and visitors. In order to obtain access, simply connect to the SW_guest network and use the password SunnybrookGuest and you will be connected. This is a free wireless courtesy service and we cannot guarantee service will always be available.


How can family members stay informed about entertainment in Warrior’s Hall, events, Family Advisory Council meetings and more?

The Family Information Update (FIU) is an email communication that is sent to interested family members 1-2 times per month. To be added to the FIU email list, please send your name, telephone number, email address and the name of the resident (your loved one) to veterans.experience@sunnybrook.ca. We do not share your email address outside of Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre.


What kind of long term parking discounts are available to families of Veteran residents?

A family discount parking pass can be purchased for parking in Parking Garage 2 (located beside L-Wing).
A maximum of 1 pass per a resident may be purchased. Each parking pass allows for parking of up to a maximum of three vehicles i.e. (3) hanging parking permits and three (3) gate cards for use by family members when visiting the Veterans Centre.

Initial purchase for the parking pass must be through the Parking Services Office in C-Wing, Ground Floor, Room CG01, but passes may be renewed at the K-Wing Resident Accounts Office, on the Ground Floor near the Artisan Market gift shop. The cost is $9.75 per week with a 3 week minimum and 16 week maximum. Rates are subject to change at any time.

When purchasing the discounted pass for the first time, please provide the following information to the Parking Office: 1) Name of Resident, 2) Name of each of the 3 Family Members, and 3) a License Plate number for each vehicle associated with the family member. One gate card and one permit will be provided for each registered family member to a maximum of 3 vehicles.

The permits are for use in Garage 2 in the basement level or Level 1 in designated long term care spaces – however, if these spots are full visitors may park anywhere in Garage 2 as long as their hang tag is visible. Please always use the available spots in the basement level and Level 1 before proceeding to the upper levels.


What are the hours of operation for Parking Services Office and the K-Wing Resident Accounts Office?

The Parking Services office (to purchase the initial pass) is open Monday to Friday 8:00 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. and 9:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. on weekends and holidays. MasterCard, Visa, Interac, cash or cheques are accepted. Tel: 416-480-6100 ext. 4123.

The K-Wing Resident Accounts Office (for renewals only) is open Monday to Friday 10:00 a.m. to 12 noon and 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. MasterCard, Visa, Interac, cash or cheques are also accepted. Tel: 416.480.6100 ext. 3100.


Are there any discount parking rates for additional visitors or family on weekends/holidays?

Reduced rate parking coupons for use on weekends and statutory holidays are available to occasional visitors or
additional family members.

The reduced rate coupons are good for one visit per coupon, and must be presented to the attendant as you exit Parking Garage 1 located in the middle of the Bayview campus.

The cost decreases to $3.25/day when using this coupon and is only valid on weekends and statutory holidays. Coupons are available from the L-Wing reception desk on weekends and some statutory holidays between 10:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. If there is no volunteer at the desk, the coupons are available from the Artisan Market gift shop in K-Wing on Saturdays and Sundays from 10:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m.

Various locations around the Sunnybrook campus offer meter parking for short-term parking. Please do not park in front of L-Wing or K-Wing at any time.