About pause4providers

The story and team behind pause4providers, as seen on Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada website

The current COVID-19 pandemic has presented new challenges for healthcare providers resulting in stress, uncertainty, fear, anxiety, depression, loss, anger and insomnia. A group of physicians who are mindfulness teachers wanted to help their colleagues and peers enhance their resilience during this critical time. As such pause4providers was born and this group began running nightly 30-minute online drop in mindfulness groups for healthcare providers in Canada and beyond.  

Mindfulness meditation is an evidence-based treatment for stress management, reduction of anxiety and\for regulation of mood  that fosters well-being, self-awareness, and coping. The aim of these drop-in groups is to help healthcare workers find a sense of wellbeing and self-compassion to cope with stress, emotional distress, change, loss, uncertainty, moral distress, manage anticipatory grief, and prevent burnout.

These accomplished doctors have a range of specialized expertise, and deliver into brief sessions targeted toward  - healthcare workers. The groups can be accessed live or through videos of practices that can be accessed at any time.

Our hope is to ease some of the hardships that our critical workforce is experiencing, with resources and material that could help bring a moment of joy into the new daily reality.

Read more about us on the Royal College newsroom website.

Introducing the pause4providers team

Orit Zamir, Facilitator

Lecturer, University of Toronto, Faculty of Medicine (Psychiatry); Psychiatrist - Sinai Health System, University Health Network, Women’s College Hospital & Toronto Academic Pain Medicine Institute. Her teaching and clinical work focus on mindfulness, psychotherapy and consulting for chronic pain clinics.

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Jennifer Hirsch, Facilitator

Lecturer, University of Toronto, Faculty of Medicine (Psychiatry); Psychiatrist - Sinai Health System, Perinatal Mental Health Programme. Her clinical work focuses on adapting mindfulness practices for those with young children in the home.

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Mary Elliott, Facilitator

Assistant Professor, University of Toronto, Faculty of Medicine (Psychiatry); Psychiatrist - Psychosocial Oncology, Princess Margaret Cancer Centre, UHN. She is a consulting psychiatrist, psychotherapist and mindfulness teacher and collaborates on research for healthcare provider wellness and young adults with cancer.

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Diane de Camps Meschino, Facilitator

Associate Professor, University of Toronto, Faculty of Medicine (Psychiatry); Psychiatrist - Reproductive Life Stages Programme, Women’s College Hospital. Her clinical, academic and education scholarship foci include improving healthcare access and health system delivery, physician mental health & wellness, and reproductive & maternal mental health.

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Paula Ravitz, Advisor/Collaborator

Associate Professor, University of Toronto, Faculty of Medicine (Psychiatry); Psychiatrist and Morgan Firestone Psychotherapy Chair - Sinai Health System. Her current research and clinical work focus on improving access to and outcomes of evidence-supported psychotherapies.

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Camille Khallouf, Research Assistant

Camille is a Buddhist Psychology student and yoga instructor. Her work and teaching rise to the contemporary challenge for greater self-care and optimal health by bridging the gap between mind and body.

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Help Us Evaluate Pause 4 Providers

We're looking to evaluate the reach and impact of our mindfulness program for a research study, which is designed to reduce stress levels and enhance resiliency in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic. Please help us by completing a voluntary, completely anonymous 10 minute survey.

If you have any questions or need any clarification, please don’t hesitate to contact us through email.

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Email Disclaimer: Please note that the security of email messages is not guaranteed. Messages may be forged, forwarded, kept indefinitely, or seen by others using the internet. Do not use email to discuss information you think is sensitive. Do not use email in an emergency since email may be delayed.

Important: If you are experiencing distressing mental health symptoms, please reach out to your medical provider or the mental health resources provided by your respective professional organizations. Examples of resources available in Alberta, British Columbia and Ontario, Canada are listed here.