Live Updates on COVID-19 from DLSPH

This page was updated on March 16, 2020


A Letter From Senior Leadership

Dear Students, Faculty & Staff,


We continue to monitor the development of the COVID-19 pandemic and are working in partnership with the Provost’s Office on a coordinated response for students, faculty and staff.


To balance the continuity of our academic and business activities while reducing the risk of transmission by observing social distancing guidelines, please note the following procedures:


Classes, Practica & Exams


The University announced on March 13 that it is cancelling in-person undergraduate and research-stream Masters and Doctoral classes across its three campuses. The decision on professional graduate classes is being left up to each faculty.


After careful consideration, the DLSPH (including both PHS and IHPME) will be cancelling all in-person classes and Instructors will implement their academic continuity plan by March 16. Instructors will communicate that plan to their classes directly. In-person classes are cancelled until April 3 at which time we will re-evaluate how to continue forward.


We are working with IT resources within the School to ensure we can support all required classes and seminars online so students can complete their classes this academic year. Additional IT human resources will be available to support faculty both in-person and online.


Instructions on how PHS faculty can access support for preparing online lectures will be shared later today. For questions, please contact Obadiah George.


IHPME faculty seeking IT support to prepare online lectures should contact:


The University will stay open during this time so that students can continue to access libraries, study space, residences, and cafeterias. This may be particularly helpful for students who need access to reliable internet.


Faculty and instructors with students and speakers travelling to Toronto for classes should contact these individuals immediately to let them know about the change in class format.


Practicum placements are still going forward for as long as possible. All practica placement leads across the School are working in partnership with the University to develop appropriate recommendations based on each practica environment. Students should discuss a work continuity plan with their practicum supervisor:


IHPME faculty seeking IT support to prepare online lectures should contact:


We will follow recommendations from the University’s Academic Continuity Committee on issues related to academic completeness, including: exams, unfinished practica, changes to existing grading schemes, and student funding.




All discretionary events — including public lectures, alumni events, receptions, panels, etc. — will be moved online, postponed or cancelled until June 1, 2020. This includes all faculty, alumni, and student-run events, regardless of who is organizing the event. If you are hosting an event, please communicate with your attendees about cancellation, rescheduling, or a change in format to online delivery.


Please check the status of off-campus events and activities with the event organizer.




Since many of our faculty members are based in health-care settings, it’s important for the School to conduct faculty and other regularly scheduled large meetings via teleconference.


I encourage all meeting organizers to offer an online/phone option and ask folks to exercise judgment and caution when attending in-person meetings.




As per Canada’s travel advisories, Canadians should not do any non-essential travel outside of Canada.


Anyone coming in or returning from specific list of countries should go into 14 days of self-isolation, this may be broadened over time to anyone coming into the country.


All work-related travel before June 1, 2020 should be cancelled, including both domestic and international. Please discuss exceptional circumstances with Steini Brown.


All Global Health placements will be cancelled until June 1, 2020.


We all need to practice basic protective measures against COVID-19. Please consider the following tips from Toronto Public Health.


We will share additional updates at regular intervals so please check email throughout this evolving situation. As is the nature of pandemics, we expect the situation to change quickly so we ask everyone to remain flexible and responsive.


Please contact the DLSPH Dean’s Office with any questions related to COVID-19 and consult the following links for more information:


Teaching support:


Status on COVID-19 Measures at U of T:


U of T FAQ about COVID-19:



I know that some of the changes we will need to make will be a bit bumpy for all involved but please bear with us. I know that we will be able to work through this challenging time and maintain academic continuity.




Adalsteinn Brown
Professor and Dean
Dalla Lana School of Public Health


France Gagnon
Professor and Associate Dean, Research (Acting Dean)
Dalla Lana School of Public Health


For more information, please visit the DLSPH website