A letter from Guy Chartrand
In the midst of a pandemic, our patients and residents are finding connections.

A senior reconnects with her best friend from college, who lives all the way over in England. A great-grandfather meets the newest addition to his family who is just 48 hours old. A mother chats with her daughter, who takes the opportunity to show her the latest DIY household renovation.

In the midst of a pandemic, our patients and residents are finding connections.

Staff holding new iPadsConversations look different these days, of course. Thanks to wonderfully generous donors like you, along with our community partners, we’ve been able to purchase tablets for Bruyère patients and residents to communicate with their loved ones while physical distancing measures are in effect.

Thank you! With your help, we’re always working on developing innovative new ways to ensure quality of life for the people in our care.

Your support of the Bruyère has helped us work towards a healthier and more resilient future. It means so much to the people we care for every day.

I know these are strange times we’re all experiencing. But I wanted to write today to reassure you that we remain more committed than ever to making lives better through our integrated system of care.

More than ever, people are seeing the vital importance of long-term care, in particular during the COVID-19 crisis – and the ways we can continue striving to do better for those who rely on us for their well-being.

While this pandemic has not been easy on anyone, I take heart in knowing Bruyère was well prepared for the challenges that faced us. Witnessing COVID-19’s progress in other countries helped us to understand what was coming.

Luckily, your support meant we had existing plans in place to expand our capacity. The wheels were already in motion to add extra beds within our care system – beds that are now available for either long-term or acute care patients in need.

Additionally, we were able to take specific measures like introducing isolation areas and negative pressure rooms to contain the spread of this disease, should a case surface within Bruyère. Thank you! All of these changes have been driven forward by the generosity of our community and of people like you.

While COVID-19 has brought a great deal of anxiety and sadness for many people, I cannot emphasize enough how much it has also brought out the tremendous good and generosity in our community.

Guy Chartrand and Peggy Taillon delivering donated meals to staffWe have been so touched to see an outpouring of support for our frontline workers, patients, and residents alike.

Did you know Mother Bruyère once faced a pandemic of her own, nearly 175 years ago? A typhus outbreak claimed hundreds of lives – but Mother Bruyère and her fellow sisters were able to provide life-saving care for hundreds more.

I think she would be inspired to see the way our community is coming together to confront this crisis.

Even as information changed daily (sometimes multiple times a day) within the first few weeks, Bruyère supporters leapt into action… And continue to amaze us still now.

Small family businesses have shown up with food for our staff. Community members have sewn countless masks. Knitters have made blankets for our residents, to wrap them up like a warm hug.

Children send drawings with encouraging notes that we use as tray liners when serving meals. A community group has provided hundreds of boxes of groceries for seniors living in Bruyère Village, so they can stay safe at home. People have continued to donate selflessly, providing vital funds to support residents in our care.

Not only have we been touched by the support of our community, but we also take great strength from the courage and determination of Bruyère’s dedicated frontline workers.

Staff continue to take on extra shifts as needed, wearing often-uncomfortable personal protective equipment for up to 12 hours at a time. Many have been redeployed to help throughout the Hospital and in our long-term care facilities – including some whose primary task is helping residents connect with their loved ones while no visitors are permitted.

Girl posing with the drawing she made to thank Bruyère staffPlease know you also have a tremendous impact not just on the way we are responding to this pandemic, but on the way we care for our patients each and every day of the year. We couldn’t be more grateful for your compassion and kindness.

As we look towards the future, we are confident the direction Bruyère has been moving in is the right one for our community.

COVID-19 has reinforced the importance of offering the highest quality of care for older adults – and we believe that Bruyère Village is one shining example of just that.

Offering a wide range of living accommodations and services in a bilingual community setting along the banks of the Ottawa River, the Village supports seniors in maintaining a healthy lifestyle and staying in their own homes as long as possible. Bruyère Village has made it possible for more people to age in place, rather than making the transition to long-term care homes.

Now, we hope to replicate its success with a similar Village in the west end of our city – while also continuing to invest in ground-breaking medical research, and provide exceptional care across all Bruyère sites.

As the population of those aged 65 and over soars to historical highs in our country, we are hard at working adapting to new realities. COVID-19 is one more obstacle to take on board, but it is not the only one we face.

More people living longer means more complex health conditions that will require ongoing care. The demand for quality long-term care and other assisted living options will only continue to grow in the years to come.

Thank you again, for your support in helping us innovate and expand our services for the future. It’s donors like you, who ensure we’re here to help your neighbour, friend, or loved one in their time of need.

With the help of our community, we’ll be better prepared to face whatever challenges tomorrow may bring – together.

Thank you for your support at this critical time.


Guy Chartrand
President and CEO

P.S. The needs of older adults are all too often overlooked within our fast-paced society. Let’s build on the awareness raised by the COVID-19 crisis to make sure every senior gets the attentive care they deserve. We are so grateful for your support!