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LTC residents now vaccinated across region

The North Bay Parry Sound District Health Unit has completed the first dose of all long-term care home resident COVID-19 vaccinations in our district.

972 people received their first dose of the immunization against COVID-19  as well as 42 long-term care home health care workers, 31 individuals from First Nation elder care facilities, and 24 First Nations Health Care providers.

Jamie Lowery, CEO of Cassellholme Home for the Aged in North Bay, says having his residents vaccinated is a relief.

“It’s always a concern and you always feel like you’re one swab away from an outbreak,” he said.

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Lowery said 220 residents were vaccinated in about 45 minutes. Seven staff were also vaccinated with leftover doses.

The Health Unit reports an additional 18 doses were administered to hospital patients awaiting transfer into a long-term care home.

A total of 1,087 (96.9 per cent of eligible long-term care residents) vaccines have been administered to date in the district.

“The staff at the First Nation Health Care Centres, the Health Unit, and long-term care homes have done a tremendous job in working together to vaccinate our long-term care home residents and First Nation elder care individuals,” states Dr. Jim Chirico, Medical Officer of Health. “We have a lot of work still to be done, with many other groups to immunize in phase one of the vaccine distribution framework.”

Due to the limited supply of COVID-19 vaccine across Ontario and Canada, it is unknown when the Health Unit will receive the next shipment of vaccines.

Once the long-term care home residents and First Nation elder care individuals have received their second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, the Health Unit will follow Ontario’s Ethical Framework for COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution to prioritize the continuation of the vaccine rollout.

The Health Unit region is currently in phase one. Other groups prioritized in phase one are:

  • staff, essential caregivers (including family caregivers), and other employees in long-term care settings;
  • residents, staff, essential caregivers (including family caregivers), and other employees in retirement homes and congregate living settings for seniors;
  • health care workers, including hospital employees, staff who work or study in hospitals and health care personnel;
  • adults in First Nations, Métis, and Inuit populations;
  • adult recipients of chronic home health care.
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