Vaccination rate highest at Minden's HHHS site
By Jenn Watt
Published Jan. 31. 2019
The Minden site of Haliburton Highlands Health Services won bragging rights this year for having the highest percentage of its staff vaccinated for the flu from among the five hospitals in the region covered by the health unit.
More than 81 per cent of the staff at the Minden site were vaccinated, up 14.6 per cent from last year.
Carolyn Plummer, HHHS CEO, said she was proud of the results in Minden.
“It is wonderful to see so many people taking this important step to protect themselves, their patients and their families,” she said in an email to the Minden Times.
HHHS uses several mechanisms to promote vaccination to staff, Plummer said, including putting up information posters and sending out multiple emails. The occupational health nurse also goes to the health care facilities during flu shot season.
“She has a mobile cart that she takes around to all areas so that all staff have the opportunity to receive their flu shot at work,” Plummer said.
Staff who choose not to get the shot are encouraged to wear a mask during flu season.
“If a flu outbreak occurs, these staff members are given a choice of taking an antiviral medication or staying home without pay during the period of the outbreak,” Plummer said.
The Haliburton site saw a decrease in vaccinations this year dropping from 70.8 per cent in 2017 to 66.7 per cent in 2018.
Plummer said the numbers are likely higher than those reported by the Haliburton, Kawartha, Pine Ridge District Health Unit, as they reflect rates between October and Dec. 15.
“Our final tally won’t be available for another month or so,” she said. “I hope that the recent media coverage regarding the effectiveness of this year’s flu shot will encourage more staff to receive the vaccine,” she said.
Minden’s hospital will be receiving a framed certificate to recognize their achievement.