GBGH puts safety first as team receives their annual flu shots
Gail Hunt, president and CEO of Georgian Bay General Hospital (GBGH) received her flu shot this year from GBGH chief of staff Dr. Vikram Ralhan. GBGH’s Occupational Health team will complete the rest of this year’s immunizations for staff, credentialed staff and volunteers. Receiving a flu vaccination is especially important this year as the hospital wants to avoid parallel surges in COVID and influenza patients this fall and winter.
October 29, 2020 – Georgian Bay General Hospital (GBGH) launched its annual influenza immunization campaign this week in the hospital’s efforts to ensure patient, visitor and staff safety during the upcoming flu season. During the campaign staff, credentialed staff and volunteers are encouraged to receive their flu shot at the hospital to protect patients, themselves, their loved ones and their colleagues.
“Our annual flu shot campaign is an important part of GBGH’s commitment to safety – for both our patients and our team,” says Gail Hunt, president and CEO, GBGH. “Receiving a flu shot this year is critically important as we want to help reduce the burden on the healthcare system during the pandemic. Each fall and winter, GBGH anticipates there will be an increased need for hospital beds, but this year with potential COVID surges a possibility, we worry about the parallel risks of the pandemic paired with a bad flu season. We need to do everything we can to ensure our patients and community are safe, and this includes receiving our flu shots.”
GBGH makes vaccination a top priority every year based on two main considerations – ensuring its team of staff, credentialed staff and volunteers don’t pass along influenza to patients, as well as ensuring its team is healthy to provide care to patients when they need the hospital.
“The hospital is doing its part to reduce the chance of transmitting flu to patients and is committed to ensuring the highest safety precautions are in place to protect patients,” says Judy Schell, manager, Occupational Health and Safety (OHS), GBGH. “It’s equally important for our community to make flu vaccination a priority this year. Vaccination has a positive impact on reducing flu activity in the community, and therefore decreases the chance it will be brought into the hospital and possibly transmitted to our patients or staff.”
To make receiving immunizations as convenient as possible, OHS is visiting all GBGH department six days a week for two weeks and then running additional clinics to ensure as many of its team members as possible receive a flu shot during the next five weeks. GBGH’s flu shot campaign is running from October 22 to November 30.
As part of standard COVID precautions, all patients and visitors are screened upon entering the building for symptoms of COVID, which can be similar to influenza. All patients and visitors are asked to wear a hospital-provided mask and practice hand hygiene when entering GBGH at the main or Emergency department entrances.
Communications Officer, GBGH
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