Media Release: BCCPA urges care providers to offer high-dose flu vaccine to seniors in long-term care

Posted on September 11th, 2019 by Wayne Nguyen under News

By: BC Care Providers Association

 

Burnaby, B.C. (September 6, 2019): BC Care Providers Association (BCCPA) is calling upon care providers across British Columbia to make the high-dose flu vaccine available for purchase to seniors living in long-term care.

As Australia grapples with a deadly influenza outbreak—claiming over 400 lives this year—experts warn that Canada could face a similar situation this fall.

The standard flu vaccine is an adequate measure against the virus for the general population. However, seniors, who have weaker immune systems, are particularly vulnerable to influenza and may require greater protection.

According to FluWatch, seniors account for 70 per cent of influenza-related hospitalizations and 90 per cent of influenza-related deaths in Canada.

“As we brace for a rough flu season, it is vital that we take all precautions to protect our most vulnerable population,” says BCCPA CEO Daniel Fontaine.

“The high-dose flu vaccine is our best shot at keeping seniors safe and out of hospital. Care providers are encouraged to make the vaccine available to seniors who may want to purchase it privately,” Fontaine adds.

Canada’s National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI) recommends that at an individual level, the high-dose flu vaccine—which contains four times the amount of antigen—should be offered over the standard dose flu vaccine to adults 65 years of age and older.

The high-dose flu vaccine is not publicly funded in B.C.

Manitoba was the first province in Canada to roll out the high-dose flu vaccine to seniors in long-term care, and over the past couple of years more jurisdictions have begun funding the vaccine, including Saskatchewan, Ontario, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island and the Northwest Territories.

In the United States, the high-dose flu vaccine has been available to seniors since 2009 and is funded by Medicare.

BCCPA has signed on to the International Federation on Aging’s consensus statement to raise awareness of adult influenza vaccination.

The statement, released Thursday, follows IFA’s Adult Influenza Vaccination meeting in Toronto in June 2019, which BCCPA attended. The event brought together experts and thought leaders from diverse disciplines and sectors to help promote the importance of influenza vaccination for at-risk populations.

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MEDIA CONTACT:
Mike Klassen
VP, Public Affairs
(604)-377-5499
mklassen@bccare.ca

About BC Care Providers Association
Established in 1977, the BC Care Providers Association (BCCPA) is the leading voice for B.C.’s continuing care sector. Our growing membership base includes over 340 long-term care, assisted living, home care, home support, independent living, and commercial members from across British Columbia.

Press Release: Uniting Diverse Groups to Improve Adult Influenza Vaccination in Canada

Posted on September 4th, 2019 by Wayne Nguyen under News

Press Release

Improving adult influenza vaccination in Canada, six key considerations highlighted from the expert meeting consensus statement.

September 5, 2019

Toronto, Ontario – The International Federation on Ageing (IFA) together with Canadian patient and advocacy organizations represented at a recent expert meeting today release a consensus statement toward raising the awareness and importance of adult influenza vaccination.

Improving influenza vaccination uptake rates in at-risk population groups such as older people and those with chronic diseases is crucial, considering the increased risk of morbidity, mortality and prolonged recovery from influenza due to underlying frailty.

  1. Canadians are faced with complex and mixed messages regarding influenza vaccination that often leads to the spread of misinformation. There is a need for clear, consistent, evidence-based messaging on influenza vaccination targeting the general population and importantly, older people and other at-risk groups.
  2. Strategies to increase influenza vaccination uptake rates amongst older people and at-risk populations must be aligned with Canada’s health equity principles. Subpopulations, including those who live in rural and remote settings, migrants, the LGBTQ community, and Indigenous peoples often face systemic barriers and implicit biases within and outside of the healthcare system
  3. Coalitions are integral to building a cohesive voice that raises the awareness and influences action to respond to low influenza vaccine uptake by collaborating and utilizing strengths across disciplines and sectors.
  4. In Canada, it is crucial that older adults and at-risk populations have access to more effective vaccines.
  5. Evidence must be improved on the burden of influenza among older adults and at-risk populations to improve communication to the general population, advocacy organizations, health care professionals, public health officials, and government.
  6. Provinces and territories are urged to examine efficacious and realistic methods of accessing existing data on vaccination uptake across the life course to inform and improve policies and practices.

To read the full statement, click here.

For media enquiries, please contact Megan Acton at macton@ifa-fiv.org.

This project was funded through an unrestricted educational grant from Sanofi Pasteur.

About the International Federation on Ageing: The International Federation on Ageing (IFA) is an international, non-governmental organization (NGO) with a unique membership base comprising government, NGOs, academics, industry, and individuals in over 70 countries.  Now over 45 years old, the IFA has become known as a leading and innovative organization that works across disciplines and sectors toward common goals that improve the lives of older people.  Through the IFA’s formal relations with the World Health Organization (WHO) and general consultative status at the United Nations and its agencies, the IFA is in the position to advocate directly with member states and contribute to and inform the intergovernmental dialogue.

About the IFA’s Vaccines4Life (V4L) Program: V4L aims to help build a world where healthy ageing and functional ability of older people are maintained through strong vaccination uptake rates.  The program has grown to be one of the leading voices and advocates for adult vaccination, working at global, country and regional levels with the aim of unifying the message and actions across to stakeholders to drive policy and practice change.  V4L expert meetings and summits are convened as platforms to build a sustainable advocacy network and strategy that focus on specific barriers preventing a more comprehensive approach to changing policy.

The IFA World Coalition on Adult Vaccination acts as a focal point to bring together and disseminate good practice as well as consolidate the voices of experts and their organizations.  The Coalition formally comments on and highlights high-level strategies at the WHO, United Nations, and similar agencies, and elevates the critical policy focus through consensus statements and campaigns.

 

 

World Health Organization: Service Provider for Part-time Tutor Role in Online Learning Programme on Healthy Ageing Needed

Posted on August 27th, 2019 by Wayne Nguyen under News, WHO

The services requested for this project relate to the provision of part-time tutoring for the online learning programme on Healthy Ageing. Throughout the training programme, each team of participants will benefit from tutor support. Tutors will provide their respective teams with procedural, technical, and content support. Tutors will be responsible for guiding participants through the programme, providing topic based and didactic guidance on a one-to-one level and on a team level, encouraging collaboration and constructive ideas and criticism within teams, and mediating between teams and community members to stimulate discussion. Tutors will also help optimize the experience of the end-user by helping participants navigate the OpenWHO platform, identifying blockers and enablers in the programme (including content and structure), managing reminders and follow-up with assigned participants to ensure timely submission of assignments, and liaising with IT staff were needed to resolve issues.

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