A Message from Dr. Chris Simpson on the KHSC Shooting
Dear members of the Queen’s health sciences community,
Those of us in the decanal office in the Faculty of Health Sciences were distraught when we learned about the shooting that happened at the KGH site of the Kingston Health Sciences Centre on Monday. I am writing to you now as a way of checking in and to make sure that you aware of the resources that are available to our community at times like this.
Many people in our community – students, faculty, and staff – go to KHSC each day to work, learn, teach, and, above all, provide care. The fact that some of our colleagues and students found themselves in harm’s way while they were on duty has unsettled us all, and we offer our deepest sympathies to anyone who has been affected by the shooting, directly or indirectly.
Please know that all of us in the faculty’s decanal office understand that this incident was disturbing and potentially traumatizing. I encourage anyone who needs help to seek it out during this difficult time. Whether you are a student, faculty member, or staff member, Queen’s can help you access mental health support through Student Wellness Services or Human Resources.
When the safety of our shared spaces is disrupted, it can shake us all, whether or not we were present for the actual incident. Everyone in our community, then, should feel comfortable seeking out support if they need it.
For 24/7 support, employees of Queen’s can utilize our Employee and Family Assistance Program (EFAP), which offers confidential wellness and counselling services. The EFAP can be reached at 1-800-663-1142.
I speak for the faculty when I say that we wholeheartedly support any member of our community should they choose to utilize any of the resources available to them. Your wellbeing is our primary concern.
I also want to commend the courage of those who were working in KHSC during the night of the shooting, especially the Emergency Department and Urgent Care Teams. This incident put all of them in the challenging position of needing to provide care right after they felt personally at risk. Treating patients under those conditions is truly an act of bravery. The fact that they have continued to provide outstanding care to their patients in the days following the shooting is equally inspiring. I know that all of us appreciate and admire their dedication.
Please let me or anyone else in the decanal office know if we can be of assistance in any way during this time. All of us are here for you.
Chris Simpson, MD
Vice-Dean, Clinical, Queen’s School of Medicine
Faculty of Health Sciences
Decanal Office, Macklem House
18 Barrie Street, Kingston, ON, K7L 3N6, Canada