The Rotary Club of Toronto Health Buses – operated by Sherbourne Health Centre - deliver mobile on-the-spot nursing care to homeless and underhoused individuals in Sherbourne’s southeast Toronto catchment area as well as other parts of the city.
Operating on a fixed weekly schedule, the Health Buses make regular stops during days and evenings at a number of community locations.
Here is the schedule for: Fall/Winter and Spring/Summer.
Teamed with program staff, nurse volunteers deliver healthcare services to over 2,000 people each month.
History of the Health Bus Program
On September 20, 2002, the Health Bus program—initiated by the Wellesley Central Health Corporation and The Rotary Club of Toronto—was officially transferred to Sherbourne Health Centre. Since that time, the program has grown steadily, providing much needed healthcare services to people who often cannot access health services elsewhere. Now, there are two Health Buses. Each, on average, serves 80 people at every stop, which usually takes close to two hours.
Why operate the Health Buses?
people, particularly the underhoused, have difficulties accessing health care
for a variety of reasons such as lack of an Ontario Health card, lack of
transportation or negative past experiences with the healthcare system.
The Sherbourne Health Centre Health Bus Program reduces these barriers by going
directly to the people, instead of waiting for them to come to the Centre,
making regular stops at local shelters, drop-in centres, community centres and
out-of-the-cold locations. There is no need to make an appointment, get a
referral or present an Ontario Health card to obtain Health Bus services.
volunteers on this mobile health centre provide both on-the-spot care and
educational services. If a patient has more involved needs, nurses on the Health
Bus make referrals to specialists and follow-up care. At each stop, nurses also
distribute items such as fresh socks and toiletries like toothpaste and shampoo,
simple items that can make a big difference for someone in need.
Outreach workers on the bus provide additional services including needle exchange/distribution.
How the Health Buses work?
This valued program owes much of its success to program staff and over 60 nurse volunteers. They make a difference by supporting people who have concerns about their health, listening to their stories and guiding them down a clearer path in the complex healthcare system.
In addition to the Rotary Club of Toronto, we are proud to work with two dozen community agencies to co-ordinate weekly Health Bus stops, programming and services. They are:
Canadian Red Cross
Community Care Access Centre
Council Fire Native Cultural Centre
Elizabeth Fry Society
519 Community Centre
Fred Victor Women's Shelter
Maxwell Meighen Shelter
Native Men's Residence
Out of the Cold (Dixon Hall)
Parkdale Community Health Centre
Regent Park Community Health Centre
St. Stephens Community Centre
South Riverdale Community Health Centre
Street Health Nursing Foundation
Street Outreach Services
Toronto People with AIDS Foundation
Toronto Western Hospital
Toronto Public Health
Woodgreen Community Services
Health care for the homeless and underhoused
Sherbourne Health Centre Health Bus stop schedule