Excellence in Quality

Measuring health equity

We Ask Because We Care

Some of our clinics may ask you about your race/ethnicity, age, preferred language, length of residency in Canada, housing status, religion, disability status, gender identity, sexual orientation and income. (View glossary of terms.)

This is because St. Michael’s wants to better understand who our patients are, so that we can make sure we’re providing the best care possible.

The information we collect will help us plan our services and improve quality of care for all patients. This information may also be shared with researchers and health system planners outside of St. Michael’s, in a way that does not personally identify you.

You can decline to answer any questions at any time. Declining to answer will not affect your care at St. Michael’s.

How will St. Michael’s use my information to improve care?

St. Michael’s uses information about patients’ race/ethnicity, age, preferred language, length of residency in Canada, housing status, religion, disability status, gender identity, sexual orientation and income in the following ways:

  • To make sure that everyone has the same access to quality health care, regardless of who they are, how much money they make or where they come from.

  • To make sure that your health care team can communicate with you in the right language.

  • To plan and improve services so that they meet all our patients’ needs.

  • To make sure that we are sensitive about your economic situation, which might affect your ability to pay for a medication or a medical device.

  • To help your St. Michael’s care provider identify additional services that you might be eligible for, and tailor care to your individual needs.

  • To learn more about how factors like language, disability and gender affect our patients’ experiences and health.

Who can see my information?

St. Michael’s takes patient privacy very seriously.

The information you choose to share with us is securely stored in your health record. This information will be seen by your health care providers, so that they can refer you to the right services and tailor care to your needs.

All personal health information stored at St. Michael’s is treated with the utmost confidentiality, in accordance with the St. Michael’s Information Practices Statement and the Personal Health Information Protection Act.

Designated St. Michael’s staff may also use your information to look at how well we’re doing in caring for different patient groups. If we share your information with health system planners or health care researchers outside of your circle of care, St. Michael’s will be responsible for protecting your privacy, for example, by removing any personal identifiers like your name or address.

You may access and correct your personal information, including your health records, or withdraw your consent for some of the uses and disclosures of your information at any time by contacting the St. Michael’s Information Access and Privacy office at 416-864-6088.

How to find out more

Questions? Please contact the St. Michael’s Information Access and Privacy office at 416-864-6088 or privacy@smh.ca.