Well Aware – Fall 2015

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The North Bay Regional Health Centre is pleased to provide you with our quarterly e-newsletter update! NBRHC Well Aware is designed to keep you up to date on changes to our services, new initiatives and news that impacts our communities.

Protect Against the Flu

Who can get it
Anyone can get the flu. If you have it, you can infect others a day before your own symptoms even appear. You’re also contagious for up to 7 days after you get sick. Children and people with weak immune systems can spread the flu virus for a longer period of time.

Learn how the flu is affecting different parts of Ontario this year

To avoid getting sick:


Get the flu shot early and every year

  • the flu shot is the best defence to protect yourself, your family and those you care for
  • Ontario’s flu shot program can prevent up to 30,000 visits to the emergency room and 200,000 to the doctor’s office on average each year
Washing hands

Wash your hands often

  • even after getting the flu shot, washing with soap and water for at least 15 seconds helps prevent the spread of the virus, which can live on your hands for up to 3 hours
  • if you use a hand sanitizer (gel or wipes), make sure it’s at least 60% alcohol
Sneezing into your sleeve

Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze

  • cough into your upper sleeve if you don’t have a tissue
  • throw the tissue out rather than putting  it in your pocket, on a desk or table
Hand not touching Face

Try not to touch your face

  • the flu virus usually enters your body through the eyes, nose or mouth
People not gathering

Stay at home when you’re sick

  • viruses spread more easily in group settings, such as businesses, schools and nursing homes
Hand with a rag cleaning

Clean (and disinfect)  common surfaces and items

  • viruses live on hard surfaces like countertops, door handles, computer keyboards and phones for up to 8 hours


Symptoms usually start 1 to 4 days after exposure to the virus. In most adults, the flu lasts 2 to 10 days. It sometimes lasts longer for the elderly, children and people with chronic illnesses.

You may have the flu if you experience:

  • fever
  • chills
  • cough
  • runny eyes
  • stuffy nose
  • sore throat
  • headache
  • muscle aches
  • extreme weakness and tiredness
  • some people may have vomiting and diarrhea, though this is more common in children than adults

Flu vs. common cold

The symptoms of the flu and the common cold are very similar.

Unlike a case of the common cold, the flu can lead to serious health problems like pneumonia.

Use this chart to help determine if you have a cold or the flu.

Symptom Cold Flu
Fever Rare Often high (102°F – 104°F or 39°C – 40°C). Starts suddenly, lasts 3 to 4 days. Not all people with flu will have a fever.
Headache Rare Often, can be severe
Muscle aches Sometimes, usually mild Often, can be severe
Feeling tired and weak Sometimes, usually mild Often, can be severe, may last 2 to 3 weeks
Fatigue (extreme tiredness) Unusual Often, can be severe
Sneezing Common Sometimes
Chest discomfort and/or coughing Sometimes, mild to moderate Often, can become severe

If you get the flu

If infected, be sure to:

  • stay home and get plenty of rest
  • drink lots of fluids
  • avoid drinks with caffeine
  • take basic pain or fever relievers but do not give acetylsalicylic acid (ASA or Aspirin®) to children or teenagers under the age of 18
  • treat muscle pain using a hot water bottle or heating pad — apply heat for short periods of time
  • take a warm bath
  • gargle with a glass of warm salt water or suck on hard candy or lozenges
  • use spray or saline drops for a stuffy nose
  • avoid alcohol and tobacco

Call your doctor or health care provider if:

  • you don’t start to feel better after a few days
  • your symptoms get worse
  • you are in a high-risk group and develop flu symptoms

You can also call Telehealth at 1-866-797-0000 to talk to a registered nurse 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. You do not need to provide your OHIP number and all information is confidential.

About the flu

The flu is a serious illness that is caused by a virus.

People experience a number of symptoms, including:

  • fever
  • muscle aches
  • extreme fatigue

For some people it can lead to pneumonia, which is a more serious illness. Some people can become very sick and will need hospital care.

In Canada, seasonal flu activity can begin as early as October and continue as late as May. Peak flu season is in a 10 to 16 week period that usually starts in December. Between 10% and 20% of the population will get the flu each year.

High-risk groups

Some people have a higher risk of complications or hospitalization from the flu. This includes, for example, children under 5, those over 65 years of age, pregnant women, people with underlying health conditions and Aboriginal Peoples.

Source: https://www.ontario.ca/page/flu-facts

Making a Difference through Tissue and Organ Donation at NBRHC

Sareena Marcassa, Kim Poisson, Monique Marshall, Dr Donald Fung, Sue Allen, Patrina Cameron, & Chantal Gagne

Sareena Marcassa, RN CCU; Kim Poisson RN CCU; Monique Marshall RN Coordinator OR; Dr Donald Fung Anaesthesia and TGLN Medical Lead; Sue Allen RN CCU; Patrina Cameron, RN Unit Leader OR; Chantal Gagne RN, Manager OR.

It takes just ONE phone call to make a difference.

When that phone call is to the Trillium Gift of Life Network (TGLN), that one call can make a difference for a number of patients waiting for an organ donation. “This year at our hospital, one organ donor gave four organs to four recipients waiting to have their lives changed,’ explains Janis Herzog, Clinical Support Lead for the TGLN and Clinical Nurse Educator, CCU at the North Bay Regional Health Centre (NBRHC).

For many years the Health Centre has participated in organ donations, but the partnership with Trillium officially began in March 2014.  “Through the entire process of becoming a designated facility, the response from our health care team has been incredible,’ Herzog says. “I am really proud of the NBRHC nurses for taking the time to make the call to Trillium. These calls help facilitate the large number of organ and tissue donations we have seen over the last 18 months,” she continues.

This year alone, between April and September, staff at NBRHC assisted to facilitate a better quality of life for 54 people with the gift of sight. Dr. Michael Leckie has been instrumental in this process at the hospital. “The satisfaction in knowing that our work is directly making a difference in the life of so many people young and old is a huge motivator for all of us involved with Trillium here at NBRHC.”

Also this year at the Health Centre, four multi-tissue donors transformed countless number of lives through their gift. Chantal Gagne, Manager, Peri-Operative Services explains it takes a lot of collaborative team work amongst the Operating Room and Critical Care staff to facilitate a multi-tissue donor. “Our staff, through their willingness to participate, have helped make this process and partnership with Trillium possible. It’s amazing to think that one multi-tissue donor alone has the potential to impact up to 75 lives,” Gagne says.

Dr. Donald Fung, Chief of Staff, says the process of organ donation can often be a difficult journey for both families and staff. “The knowledge that something so good can come out of a terrible and often tragic event can be a comfort and provide a lasting memory for the families,” Dr. Fung says.

Herzog explains the process of organ and tissue donation is an emotional and physical challenge for all staff involved—particularly in the Critical Care Unit and Operating Room Departments where the majority of organ donation preparation and retrieval is done. “People may not realize the amount of behind the scenes work and resources that are required from many allied health disciplines to make these donations a reality,” she explains.

For more information on the gift of organ and tissue donation, please visit beadonor.ca

photoVOICE – Strength Based

Recently 10 patients participated in the latest photoVOICE group at the North Bay Regional Health Centre, focusing on the final recovery principle in the photoVOICE series.

What is photoVOICE?

photoVOICE is a grassroots approach to social change that uses the medium of photography to share the patient experience, what it means to have a mental illness and how it affects family members.

The use of photography eliminates the limitations of language, ethnicity or education and, is thus inclusive in nature. Participants are self-directed throughout photoVOICE, supported and encouraged by the facilitators. Simply put, the camera is their hands.

Click here to watch videos from the previous photoVOICE groups:


Recovery Principle: Strength Based

At NBRHC, recovery is an individual and ongoing journey toward a satisfying, hopeful and contributing life in which a person gains a renewed sense of meaning and purpose. Like stepping stones along the way, the following recovery principles support this journey and are inherent in the provision of all services. “Recovery: a journey of hope, healing and empowerment.”

  • Self-direction: the recovery process must be self-directed by the individual, who defines his or her own life goals and designs a unique path towards these goals.
  • Person-centered: There are multiple pathways to recovery based on an individual’s unique strengths and resiliencies as well as his or her needs, preferences, experiences (including past trauma) and cultural background.
  • Empowerment: Patients have the authority to choose from a range of options and to participate in all decisions that will affect their lives, and are educated and supported in so doing.
  • Holistic: Recovery encompasses an individual’s whole life, including mind, body, spirit, and community. Families, providers, organizations, systems, communities, and society play crucial roles in creating and maintaining meaningful opportunities for consumer access to these supports.
  • Nonlinear: Recovery is not a step-by-step process but one based on continual growth, occasional setbacks, and learning from experience.
  • Peer support: Patients are encouraged and engaged with other individuals living with mental illness. They provide each other with a sense of belonging, supportive relationships, valued roles, and community.
  • Respect: Community, systems, and societal acceptance and appreciation of patients — including protecting their rights and eliminating discrimination and stigma— are crucial in achieving recovery. Respect ensures the inclusion and full participation of patients in all aspects of their lives.
  • Responsibility: Patients have a personal responsibility for their own self-care and journeys of recovery. Patients must strive to understand and give meaning to their own experiences and identify coping strategies and healing processes to promote their own wellness.
  • Hope: Recovery provides the essential and motivating message of a better future — that people can and do overcome the barriers and obstacles that confront them. Hope is internalized; but can be fostered by peers, families, friends, providers, and others. Hope is the catalyst of the recovery process.
  • Strengths-based: Recovery focuses on valuing and building on the multiple capacities, resiliencies, talents, coping abilities, and inherent worth of individuals.

This latest photoVOICE group at NBRHC focused on the final recovery principle left in the series—Strength Based.

NBRHC staff act as photoVOICE facilitators and work with patients in small groups. Patients are loaned cameras and set out to document their recovery journey through photographs.

David John-George shared the following photo and explains it represents the inner strength inside of him. He gets strength from being outdoors and surrounded by trees and wildlife.

Marc Vezeau shared this photo (Marc Vezeau.jpg) which he described as “food for strength.”

Marc Vezeau shared this photo which he described as “food for strength.”


And finally, Timothy Thornton shared this photo described simply as “steps.”

Steps outside

Northern Shores Medical Clinic Accepting Patient Applications

Clinic to start seeing patients early 2016

The new Northern Shores Medical Clinic will begin accepting applications for patients beginning Monday November 23rd, 2015. The Clinic, made up of three family doctors originally from the North Bay area, will be ready to begin seeing patients in their family practice early next year (2016).

Applications can be filled out online here http://northernshoresmedical.com/ or picked up at City of North Bay and MPP Vic Fedeli’s Office. Completed forms can also be mailed to PO Box 1080, North Bay On, P1B 8K3.

If you have issues filling out your information, please email application@northernshoresmedical.com.

North Bay

50 College Drive,
P.O. Box 2500
North Bay, ON
P1B 5A4
Tel: 705-474-8600

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680 Kirkwood Drive,
Sudbury, ON
P3E 1X3
Tel: 705-675-9193
Fax: 705-675-6817

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Floor Plans

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Visitors Guide

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