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You may have seen a story this morning in the Globe and Mail about Sunnybrook implementing a vaccinate-or-mask policy this coming flu season so we thought we should let you know what UHN will be doing in the fall. The policy at Sunnybrook, as we understand it, is to either have a vaccination or wear a procedure mask throughout the flu season.
As always, we want to protect our patients, you, and your family so we will be running our flu campaign this fall with the expectation that everyone should take the flu shot. The availability of the shot and the support for the campaign will be intense – especially in the clinical areas of the hospital where people are working with patients who are very ill.
We are also planning to work with all staff, patients and their families around all respiratory illnesses – because flu is just one of the viruses that circulates and we want to protect you and our patients from all respiratory illnesses. So, we will be expecting anyone who has symptoms of respiratory illness to wear a procedure mask if they must work with patients and we will be educating our patients and their visitors on the importance of being well when visiting the hospital.
Of course, if you have a fever and respiratory symptoms, you should not be working until your fever is gone and you are better.
We expect you to get a flu shot this season to protect patients, your family and yourself. We will be working with everyone so that we can achieve a higher rate of vaccination and we will be requiring those with respiratory symptoms who must work to wear a procedure mask. This has the support of our IPAC group and Occupational Health & Safety.
Justine and Emma