Using the correct email address for colleagues? Be sure: When you write, get it right!

Some usernames can make you see double (or triple, or quintuple….)

In our CIUSSS, each employee’s contribution is unique. But their name? Not necessarily so.

When the CIUSSS system came into existence four years ago, the workforce was significantly rearranged. And so was the way their electronic contact information is listed. With so many people in our province-wide ranks, odds are that some names were bound to be duplicated—or even triplicated or quadruplicated.

That’s why, when you check the professional contacts in the database of the Ministry of Health and Social Services, you’ll find the same Anne-Marie Ouellet or John Smith—with whom you’ve been exchanging emails for years—included in a long dropdown list alongside identically named employees at sites throughout Quebec.

“Always remember to take an extra moment to confirm that the colleague you’re emailing is your intended recipient, and not another MSSS employee with the same name,” cautions Sabine Cohen, Associate Director of Information Management. “When an email goes to the wrong recipient with an identical name, the result may be the inadvertent disclosure of confidential information. We work in a sector where privacy, security and confidentiality are more than a courtesy—they’re an obligation.”

One key to identifying the correct person is to check the sub-domain that appears after their name in an email address. In most instances, that will be “ccomtl”, the email acronym for “CIUSSS West-Central Montreal”, which has over 7,500 contacts. That address will most often look like firstname.lastname.ccomtl@ssss.gouv.qc.ca. For a double verification, ccomtl also appears in the display name. Drop even a single letter, “comtl”, and your email will be sent to a colleague who works at a neighbouring healthcare network, CIUSSS West Montreal.

The abbreviated name of a staff member’s work site might appear after their name:
firstname.lastname.cbooth@ssss.gouv.qc.ca = Catherine Booth Hospital
firstname.lastname.cdn@ssss.gouv.qc.ca = CLSC de Côte-des-Neiges
firstname.lastname.chsldjuif@ssss.gouv.qc.ca = Donald Berman Jewish Eldercare Centre
firstname.lastname.clethb@ssss.gouv.qc.ca = Constance-Lethbridge Rehabilitation Centre
firstname.lastname.cvd@ssss.gouv.qc.ca = Cavendish
firstname.lastname.dlm@ssss.gouv.qc.ca = De la Montagne
firstname.lastname.mackay@ssss.gouv.qc.ca = Mackay Centre
firstname.lastname.mhgc@ssss.gouv.qc.ca = Maimonides Geriatric Centre
firstname.lastname.miriam@ssss.gouv.qc.ca = Miriam Home and Services
firstname.lastname.parcx@ssss.gouv.qc.ca = CLSC de Parc Extension
firstname.lastname.sinai@ssss.gouv.qc.ca = Mount Sinai Hospital

Some Jewish General Hospital (JGH) employees have retained their pre-network domain, in either of the following formats:

flastname@jgh.mcgill.ca
firstname.lastname@jgh.mcgill.ca

If any doubt remains, Dave Checkland, the Interim Associate Director of Information Resources, suggests that you send a brief email to confirm the identity of the recipient, especially if the eventual correspondence contains sensitive information about a patient, resident or client.

Any CIUSSS staff who share a name with other colleagues and who receive email messages that are intended for others are urged to contact CSIT via Octopus. If two or more staff members within our network share a name, it is possible to add a descriptive term to the user’s displayed name—such as their title or department: Mark Smith (Social Work)—to minimize confusion.

Mr. Checkland also reminds staff who receive an email intended for another user, whether owing to name duplications or for any other reason, to notify the sender as quickly as possible.

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