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June 02, 2021
Phillip Anthony with team member at vaccine pop-up clinic

Ted Rogers School of Management student Phillip Anthony is one of the architects behind some of Toronto’s highest-volume vaccination clinics, and credits his learnings in the Health Services Management program for helping him succeed in his role.

The part-time student is a nurse who has worked at Michael Garron Hospital since 2016. Once the COVID-19 pandemic hit last year, Anthony moved into the role of COVID Outbreak Lead for a year and then into a Project Manager position for Long-Term Care Homes and Community Outreach.

This May, he took on his most important role yet in the fight against COVID – Manager of the East Toronto Mobile Vaccination Strategy. He is one of the people behind the city’s highly successful pop-up vaccine clinics, including the Thorncliffe Park Community Hub clinic at East York Town Centre, which administered 10,470 doses in less than 24 hours – a Canadian first.

Here is what Anthony had to say about his work during the pandemic and how his experience in the Health Services Management program helped to prepare him for it:  

Why did you join the Health Services Management program at the Ted Rogers School? 

I joined the Ted Rogers School for multiple reasons. The courses offered in the Health Services Management Program would provide me with the foundational knowledge to be successful as a healthcare leader. In addition, the flexible scheduling has allowed me to focus on both my education and career. 

Tell us about some of the work you've done at Michael Garron Hospital during the pandemic?

My role at Michael Garron Hospital during the pandemic has been primarily involved in COVID-19 Outreach. I started off managing COVID-19 outbreaks in Long-Term Care or Retirement Homes. This progressed into leading the vaccination work in Long-Term Care and Retirement Homes. Currently, I am the Manager of Mobile Vaccine Strategy, which involves leading all mobile vaccine work in East Toronto. I also Co-Chair the Toronto Sprint Strategy, which is a city-wide vaccination strategy across multiple Ontario Health Teams.

Tell us about your role in setting up pop-up vaccine clinics in the city, including one that had over 10,000 vaccinations?

My role in setting up pop-up clinics varies depending on the clinic, but I oversee a lot of them. Our team works with community partners and elected officials to decide on locations and outreach strategies. From there, we set up all tents, permits and equipment needed. I coordinate with our Clinic Manager and team to ensure the clinic well-staffed and running smoothly. 

How does it feel to see these clinics such a success and to have such an impact on the fight against COVID? 

It is an incredible feeling to see these clinics be so successful. Through my outreach work in Long-Term Care, Retirement Homes, congregate settings and postal codes with high prevalence of COVID-19, I have personally seen how devastating this virus can really be. Being able to deliver hope to these individuals and communities through vaccine clinics is very rewarding to me.  

How has what you learned in the Health Services Management program helped in the work you've been doing?

This program has provided me with the foundational knowledge needed to succeed in my role. Many of the courses relate to different aspects of my career. 

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