Development and the Implementation of a Pandemic Response Plan for a Large School in Toronto | MDconsultants

Occupational & Organizational Health


Development and implementation of a pandemic response plan for a large school in Toronto


During the COVID-19 pandemic, a K-12 school in Toronto grappled with changing public health recommendations and emerging research pertaining to testing, isolation, and infection control practices specific to schools. In the absence of a pandemic preparedness protocol or an in-house division of Occupational Health, the school initially implemented overtly restrictive practices that had a negative impact on employee and student wellness.


Public health recommendations were often confusing or contradictory and lagged behind the latest research. The school’s administration found it challenging to answer a high volume of questions from concerned parents and staff.

Value delivered

MDconsultants performed a rapid needs assessment for the school and created a multi-faceted solution to address the school’s needs. We:

  • Developed a consultant working group with expertise in public health, emergency medicine, infectious diseases and occupational health.
  • Consolidated existing public health recommendations with the latest research evidence to create recommendations catered specifically to the school’s priorities regarding appropriate infection control policies, student and staff testing, and isolation protocols.
  • Staffed an “on-call” service, allowing the school to contact a designated consultant 7 days a week for emergency advice and recommendations.
  • Expanded consulting for the school by addressing non-pandemic related organizational mental health and burnout needs.
  • Created a sustainable solution for the school by recruiting a regulated healthcare professional for the school that was employed full-time onsite and supported by MDconsultants as needed.