At The Scarborough Hospital (TSH), ethics is everyone’s business from the patient’s bedside to the boardroom. Every day, decisions are made in health care that may be considered ‘ethical’ in that they cannot be answered without appealing to values. For this reason, the Ethics program at TSH strives to produce a positive and healthy ethical climate in which:

  • Basic ethical principles and moral reasoning are considered in making values-based decisions in patient care
  • The hospital’s Mission, Vision and Values are applied and reinforced through policies, practices, activities and interactions

What We Offer

Services provided include:

  • Conducting ethics consultations when it is difficult to make health care decisions in patient care   (for self or for a loved one). For example:
    • A patient who is refusing dialysis (a medical treatment to remove waste products from blood) when his kidneys are damaged and the family is concerned that the patient does not understand the implications of his decision.
    • A family that wants a patient to be treated but does not want the patient to be informed of his/her diagnosis.
  • Delivering ethics education in the hospital for patients and families and in the community
  • Reviewing, developing, implementing and evaluating ethics-related policies
  • Participating on relevant hospital committees and working groups

The Ethics program provides resources to help make difficult decisions in health care.

The Role of the Substitute Decision-Maker: Making Health Care Decisions for Others

If you have a loved one who is ill and unable to make his/her treatment decisions, please visit our substitute decision-maker page. The information, guidelines and support provided will help you to make fair and appropriate health care choices for your loved one.

Making Decisions with Integrity:

This Ethical Decision Making tool has been adopted by the TSH Board of Directors to help health care providers and administrators work through challenging ethical issues.


If you find yourself struggling with making a health care decision for yourself or someone you love, or wondering what would be the right thing to do in a complex patient care situation while at TSH, think about contacting the Ethics Consultation Service that is available to:

  • Patients
  • Family members
  • Staff
  • Physicians
  • Students
  • Volunteers

The Ethics Consultation Service would assist in the identifying, clarifying and addressing the ethical concerns.

Where To Find Us

General campus
West Wing, Ground Floor

Monday to Friday from 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
416-438-2911 ext. 8026