Humber River Hospital launches Health Leadership Development Program for staff

Posted on August 06, 2019
Humber River Hospital launches Health Leadership Development Program for staff

Humber River Hospital (HRH) is North America’s first fully digital hospital. The newly-opened facility boasts cutting-edge technology and innovative programs.

For example, integrated video in operating rooms allows HRH surgeons to teach others and to consult with experts around the world. Robots deliver non-narcotic medication throughout HRH. The hospital’s command centre is a Canadian first and has significantly improved patient flow through the hospital, so much so that it has enabled the hospital to care for more patients at no additional cost to the system.

michael gardam speaking
Dr. Michael Gardam and Dr. Sheila Laredo speaking at the Fireside Chat

Dr. Michael Gardam, HRH’s Chief of Staff, wanted to develop a customized training program for his team of physicians and health professionals to upgrade their management and communication skills to continue his hospital’s leadership in enhancing patient outcomes and reinventing patient care.

Gardam partnered with the Schulich ExecEd (Schulich ExecEd) to develop the Healthcare Leadership Development Program (HLDP), customized for HRH. The HLDP Program is a 10-month Masters Certificate program designed to develop healthcare leaders as agents of change. It is delivered in a modular format totalling more than 90 hours of study for each participant.

Incorporated into the fabric of the program is executive coaching; both one-on-one and peer group coaching.  There is also an independent Action Learning Project tailored to each student’s personal leadership needs.

Session presenters include Schulich ExecEd’s expert faculty, guest speakers, facilitators and notable healthcare leaders in “fireside chats”.

Framed within the “5 Leadership Mindsets” pioneered by Henry Mintzberg of McGill University, the HLDP promotes participants’ natural ability to lead and focuses their development towards:

  1. Learning how to effect change in complex adaptive systems;
  2. Understanding the importance of diverse inputs and engagement of others in the system;
  3. Inspiring collaboration and action among stakeholders and teams;
  4. Furthering participants’ leadership in Ontario’s health-care system;
  5. Advocating effectively for quality and healthy outcomes for patients

Completion of the HLDP results in Continuing Medical Education (CME) and CCEPD credits for the participants.

The HLDP, which launched in March 2019, has generated positive reviews based on HRH participant feedback:

“Fireside chat with Dr. Sheila Laredo! …. amazing with some tangible takeaways, one of my favorites of this course; Discussion on disruptive behavior and the “ripple effect” and what message it sends/promotes; Discussion about burnout and psychological safety was great; Use of case studies really helped operationalize concepts”

“…. Understanding how to make meetings more effective; group norms and psychological safety; media training was great…Excellent meeting advice; Dr. Susan Lieff was excellent!”

HRH participants will graduate from the program in November 2019 after successfully completing their Action Learning Project, which will be presented to HRH’s Senior Management Team.

Dr. Barry McLellan speaking during the Fireside Chat
A table of happy participants engaged in group work during one of the program modules.


The Schulich ExecEd’s Physician Leadership Development Program (PLDP) is designed for physicians and healthcare leaders and has been presented across Canada to local, regional and provincial health organizations. The program is tailored to suit the specific needs of each organization and its healthcare professionals. For more information, contact Robert Lynn by email.