With an increased emphasis on wearing proper Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), such as face shields and masks, a new problem has sprung up: the caring smiles we provide to our patients and residents, often a source of comfort during uncertain times, are hidden.

Recognizing who is caring for you, and seeing their smile, is fundamental to providing compassionate, person-centred care. And, at Providence, it’s what we’re always striving to do.

So how can we make sure patients can see our smiles while still following current policies and procedures that keep ourselves, our patients, and our colleagues safe?

PHC Speech Language Pathology may have just the right solution – and it starts with a selfie.

“As I walked through the ICU towards my patient’s room, eight different staff members and others who nodded their agreements said ‘What a great idea,’ ‘I want one of those,’ ‘I need that, I can’t even recognize my colleagues’ and so on,” said Gail, SLP at St. Paul's Hospital. 

“When I approached my depressed patient, who is currently quadriplegic with a trach and barely able to speak, she looked at my photo, smiled then looked at my eyes through my goggles.  I asked what she thought of it, and she said ‘It’s great.’” 

With the support of the St. Paul’s Foundation and Professional Practice Office, Speech-Language Pathology has received funding to produce staff photos that can be used when staff are wearing our shields and masks. A photo card clipped to your uniform will show your name, your role, and a smiling photo of yourself.

If you would like to be involved, take a selfie or a close-up portrait of yourself.  Instructions have been sent to program leaders on how to collect the photos in batches before sending them to Gail.  For any further information about this program, email Gail at


This page last updated May 1, 2020 5:33pm PDT