GUELPH POLITICAST #265 – COVID-19: One Year Later…

Outside of the City of Guelph or Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Public Health, it’s hard to think of a group that’s been more entwined with the day-in/day-out issues of COVID-19 than the Guelph Family Health Team. From testing to vaccination, the Family Health Team has been in the thick of it through the pandemic, and one year later it seems timely to get some insight from behind the scenes.

March 17, 2020 was not the start of the pandemic in Ontario, but it was the day that the proverbial stuff got real. Entirely new public health measures in response to the burgeoning pandemic were initiated, seemingly overnight, but the response in Guelph and area was the result of weeks of pre-planning among various parties, groups and government agencies, including the Guelph Family Health Team.

Already part of the Guelph and Area Ontario Health Team, the GFHT was an appropriate choice to help co-ordinate the local COVID response. Their experience allowed a testing clinic next to Guelph General Hospital to be rapidly set up and established to accept potential COVID cases. Now, this past Monday, the team helped open a second vaccine clinic in Guelph, which is remarkable work because all this has been happening while the Family Health Team is still providing primary care to its own patients.

Ross Kirkconnell, the executive director of the Family Health Team, is the guest on this week’s podcast, and he will talk about how the team got involved in pandemic planning, how they’ve been balancing that with their primary patient care. Kirkconnell will also talk about how Guelph’s good social fabric helped make the pandemic response easier, and how it’s proving why integrated healthcare matters. And finally, he will discuss the vaccine rollout, and what lessons we should learn from the events of the last year.

So let’s talk about pandemic management on this week’s episode of the Guelph Politicast.

You can learn more about the Guelph Family Health Team at their website and you can also find them easily on social media. The Guelph Family Health Team is helping to manage vaccination sites at Skyjack and the University of Guelph, but for any information concerning the vaccination effort or when and how you can get a vaccine, you have to go to Public Health’s website.

The host for the Guelph Politicast is Podbean. Find more episodes of the Politicast here, or download them on your favourite podcast app at Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, Google Play, and Spotify.

Also, when you subscribe to the Guelph Politicast channel and you will also get an episode of Open Sources Guelph every Monday, and an episode of End Credits every Friday.

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