Ontario’s Virtual Critical Care Unit lets doctors and specialists consult with patients over video conferencing. 23 hospitals in the North East are now part of the program. The goal of the VCC Unit is to avoid transferring patients between hospitals.

Dr. Derek Manchuk, medical lead for the program, says the model has standardized care across the region.

“Giving patients ease of availability to the critical care team here at HSN [Health Sciences North],” says Dr. Manchuk. “And giving support to all our partners across the LHIN [Local Health Integration Network].”


The VCC Unit has been in place since May of last year, and has seen over 100 patients. 40 of those didn’t have to transferred, which saved almost $700, 000 in health care.

Manchuk says this could be the way of the future.

“With all the health human resource challenges we have in the North, I think making specialists providers, whether it be allied health or physicians, available through the tele-medicine, only makes sense.”