Virtual Care, Digital Health and COVID-19

July 07, 2023

Originally posted Mar. 17, 2020. Last updated July 7, 2023

Shift to Virtual Care - Primary Care Response to COVID-19 Pandemic Document

On Thursday, March 19 Ontario's Chief Medical Officer of Health issued a memo Re: Managing Health Worker Illness and Return to Work COVID-19. In the document he makes recommendations related to travel and return to work for health care providers. He also notes:
While other services are decreasing their operations, in health care you are being called upon to care for patients and to be ready for surge. I am asking, where there may be an opportunity, for all health system employers to facilitate work arrangements that enable appropriate employees to work from home or to work virtually, if not re-deployable.
Health system employers should also consider a review of their services and practices to identify how they can provide services to patient groups virtually or remotely.

These are uncertain times, but the recommendation is to try to accommodate care for patients virtually as much as possible. Below are resources to assist teams. These will be updated as they become available.

We are collecting stories from our members on they have shifted to virtual care in response to COVID-19. Summary of findings and a resource table can be found here: Shift to Virtual Care-Primary care response to COVID-19. We will continue to update this document so if you would like share any stories please email:


Virtual Care & Digital Health

Guidance Documents
Virtual Care Platforms, Supports & Fact Sheets for Teams

For EMR Screening Tools and Toolbars, see the Infection Control Resources And Tools page. 

Consent for Electronic Communication

For IT resources while clinics transition to virtual care during COVID-19, refer to Management And Operations, Human Resources And COVID-19

    Documents for Patients

    To capture the patient experience with virtual care please refer to the Primary Care Patient/Client Virtual Care Experience Survey. 

    Webinars and Recordings
    Special Offers to Teams


    Some resources have restricted access: * Members-only resources** Triad-only resources

    Return to: Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) Updates

    Disclaimer: The information in this resource centre represents general guidance developed by AFHTO and their partners, gathered through a rapid, non-systematic scan of relevant and valuable guidelines with an intent to support you in a timely fashion. The information reflects best knowledge at the time of writing and is subject to revision based on rapidly changing circumstances and conditions. As new best practice evidence emerges, recommendations may evolve. The resources above should be considered supplementary guidance and are not meant to replace clinical judgement or organizational directives.