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Staff flu shot rate enhances patient safety

Patient Safety at Runnymede Healthcare Centre is a number one priority and a responsibility that is shared by all staff and volunteers. Every flu season, the interprofessional team demonstrates this commitment by receiving their influenza (flu) shot to help keep patients, visitors, staff and volunteers healthy. flu_shot_graphic.jpg

In 2015, Runnymede had one of the highest vaccination rates among its peer hospitals in the Greater Toronto Area, with 80% of staff and volunteers rolling up their sleeves to get their shot. So far, the hospital’s participation rate for the 2015-2016 flu season is even more impressive: as of the beginning of February, 90% have received the flu shot.

According to the Government of Ontario, hospital patients with existing health conditions are at a greater risk of being seriously effected by the flu, compared to otherwise healthy individuals. This makes it especially important for Runnymede to take whatever steps it can to reduce their chances of getting sick with the flu virus.

The success of the flu shot campaign is due, in part, to a dedicated interprofessional committee that raises awareness about the vaccine’s safety and effectiveness with information sessions that are engaging and fun. The committee also sets up a mobile vaccination unit that moves throughout the hospital, providing easy access to the vaccine for staff and volunteers.

"Bringing educational resources and the flu shot directly to the places where staff members work makes a huge difference," said Chief Nursing Executive, Raj Sewda. "Our high participation numbers are a strong reflection of Runnymede’s culture of ongoing quality improvement and dedication to patient safety."

The campaign is just one example of how the hospital successfully lowers the risk of spreading infection. For more information and educational resources about infection prevention and control at Runnymede, please visit http://runnymedehc.ca/quality-accountability/infection-protection.

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