Impact Report: Infectious Diseases | Jewish General Hospital Foundation

Impact Report: Infectious Diseases

“With infection you have to adapt because you’re fighting a living organism. I think the strength that exists within the Jewish General Hospital’s DNA, is in its ability to manage extraordinary circumstances.”

— Dr. Karl Weiss, Chief, Division of infectious diseases at Montreal Jewish General Hospital

Centre of Excellence in Infectious Diseases

The Centre of Excellence in Infectious Diseases is home to 7 microbiologists, who devote themselves to the discovery of novel means to prevent antibiotic resistance, as well as research into other viral and infectious diseases. We must be ready for what comes next. We have seen first-hand the impact of COVID-19 on our society, our health, our way of life. It is only through cutting-edge research—the kind that happens at the JGH—that we will be able to meet the next microbial foe head-on.

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Thousands of you answered our call for help with an overwhelming show of support, raising over $5.6 million in the fight against the coronavirus. Because of you, our Hospital staff was able to focus on treating patients and saving lives.

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Connecting to care during covid-19

The Jewish General Hospital was already leading the way in digital health, transforming patient-centred care by connecting all data points in one centralized source before the pandemic even began. Since March 2020, the hospital has ramped up its efforts to maintain exceptional patient-centred care, without exception thanks to donors like you who invested in digital health services.

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”If I’m alive today, it is thanks to them. If I can look into the future, it is because of them. It is that simple. Thank you.”

— Pablo Gray, COVID-19 patient

80% of all visits are now done via telehealth at the Goldman Herzl Family Practice Centre at the JGH

120 volunteers made calls to 260 isolated and vulnerable older adults during COVID-19


• The hospital quickly adapted to COVID-19 by establishing testing clinics in trailers at the JGH’s Pavilion H parking lot

• Thanks to our donors, priorities shifted and hot zones were implemented to respond to the needs of COVID-19, by converting the emergency department into a testing garage, for example

• A collaborative clinical trial (researchers from the Jewish General Hospital, Université de Montreal, Hema-Quebec, McMaster University, and Sunnybrook and SickKids hospitals in Toronto, among others) was set up to study whether the plasma of recovered patients could be used to treat COVID-19

• Creation of a biobank that will make predicting optimal treatment for COVID patients possible

• Using artificial intelligence to predict where the coronavirus will hit and warn at-risk people

• Investigating what makes this new coronavirus transmit so rapidly and what drugs could combat it

• McGill “made-from-scratch” version of the gold-standard laboratory test for the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus
• The JGH Volunteer calling program for seniors: The program has trained 120 volunteers to make calls to isolated and vulnerable older adults during COVID-19. The phone calls provide friendly support, and are intended to assess the individual’s basic needs in terms of medicine, food and mental health, and connect them with resources such as psychiatric care as needed

• The program has provided ongoing services to about 260 clients and made 750 calls made to date

• Significant investment in telepsychiatry infrastructure to help people through pandemic-related distress

• Designated (by The Ministry of Health and Social Services) as the primary hospital in Montreal where COVID-positive patients can receive psychiatric treatment. This required the creation of another hot zone within the hospital to prevent the spread to other units
• The Hero Project provided over 25,000 meals and snacks to fuel front-line workers

• 300 hotel rooms provided to staff on the front-lines to help keep them safe and avoid putting their families at risk

• 350,000 items of PPE provided

• Acquired three state-of-the-art industrial 3D printers enabling the JGH to develop prototype ventilators to help fight COVID-19, and they will be utilized to create other critical equipment for the future

• At the Goldman Herzl Family Practice Centre at the JGH, appointments using telehealth (also known as telemedicine) became the norm. approx. 80% of all visits are now done via telehealth

• Video-conferencing is now being used to conduct psychiatric and mental health assessment

• At the Segal Cancer Centre at the JGH, patients are now participating in virtual visits with their oncologist, when possible



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