H1N1 - What’s the deal with no clinic in Ajax?

I was checking into the Clinic locations and see that Bowmanville, Oshawa, Whitby and Pickering all have H1N1 Flu clinics.

Why doesn’t Ajax have an H1N1 Clinic of it’s own ? I just spoke to my Mother in Fonthill and she does not have to go to Welland to get her shot, she will go to the local firehall and get one. She is just as close to Welland as we are to Pickering.

I would like to know why Whitby does not have to share with Oshawa ?

We have enough of a population that our council keeps harping about another politician to pay at the Region level but no one makes enough noise about an H1N1 clinic in town ?

Will we get one on Monday for the people not deemed high risk ?

8 Responses to “H1N1 - What’s the deal with no clinic in Ajax?”

  1. admin Says:

    H1N1 Flu Vaccination Clinics
    Durham Region Health Department has opened five locations for residents to receive the H1N1 vaccine.

    Oct 28 to November 28: all 5 sites open
    (clinic dates may be extended)
    Monday to Friday 2 p.m. to 8 p.m. & Saturdays: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

    Clinic Locations (wheelchair accessible/walk-ins - no appointments needed)
    Bowmanville
    2849 Hwy. 2 Bowmanville
    (formerly Veridian Connections Inc.)

    Oshawa
    850 King St. W, Unit 26, Oshawa
    (King and Thornton-lower entrance at back)
    (formerly social services)

    Whitby
    3050 Garden St. Whitby
    (Garden and Rossland) (formerly TruestarFitness)

    Pickering
    Pickering Town Centre, Unit 14, 1355 Kingston Rd. Pickering
    (formerly Fabricland)

    North Durham-Uxbridge
    2 Douglas Rd., Uxbridge
    (Toronto and Douglas) (formerly Williamson’s Auto)

  2. SM Says:

    That’s a good question. The only place in town that would be capable of holding such an event is the community centre. Maybe town officials didn’t want to deal with the traffic issues that would be created by holding one of these clinics. On the otherhand, if the clinic was accessable by bicycle, I’m sure we could arrange to have a clinic setup near the closest bike path (ha ha).

    But seriously, I agree that a clinic should be set up here. Is there a shortage of nurses who are qualified to give the flu shots?. The way things are going, it might be a long time before the rest of the population gets it (shortage). Anyways, I’m not planning to stand in line for 11 hours to get this shot. I’ll wait until my own doctor can give it.

    Karem: You are probably right, we can barely have a festival anywhere that can provide sufficient parking.

  3. Christie McLardie Says:

    Good morning:

    This is to clarify that the Town was not approached by the Region regarding space. Since the Town learned of the discrepancy, we have offered to provide free space to the Region. The Region is insisting that a clinic in Ajax is not required. To voice your concern, please email

    Roger.Anderson@region.durham.on.ca
    Robert.Kyle@durham.ca

    Karem: Thanks for the update. I will add that the Health and Social Services Committee meeting when the clinic locations were announced it turned out to be the same day as our GGC meeting and no Councillor from Ajax was in attendance to question the fact no clinic was going to be set up in Ajax. Someone asked why there was no clinic in Brock and was told something about IT requirements and Human Resources. Councillor Jordan was absent due to Municipal Business - GGC meeting was in the afternoon on same day. I hope the Doctors that do practice in Ajax are fastracked the vaccine for patients here since there is no clinic.

  4. Brian Johnson Says:

    As a person who stood in line to get my 3 year old vaccinated at Pickering Town Centre I honestly can’t believe how horribly managed this whole mess has been. ALL levels of government of all political stripes need to accept some accountability for this.

    Although I think adequate supply was ordered for the high priority groups, it’s clear that it was ordered later than most countries. On a provincial level, the policy of not refusing those who jump the queue was a travesty from the get go. This problem was only exacerbated by local public health officials’ inability to devise a realistic and managed process for receiving the vaccine.

    What happened in Ottawa and the Provincial Legislatures around the country will never be really known by the average public but I can speak first hand about my experience at Pickering Town Centre.

    My wife and I first took our son on Saturday to be vaccinated. The line was through the food court and then continued at the top of the escalator almost all the way back to The Bay. About 2/3rds of the way down the line was a sign indicating that those behind the sign would not be vaccinated today. We left.

    On my way out I did an assessment of the line and of the hundreds of people in the line, I can honestly say that 75%-80% of the people were not obviously under 5 years old or pregnant. Now I understand that some may have been frontline healthcare workers or had underlying health conditions but I have a hard time believing that all those people had underlying health conditions. I saw one family of six ranging in age from about 12 – 50 all looking healthy. If even only 2 of those people had asthma or some other condition why were the other 4 in line?

    We returned on Monday and arrived about fifteen minutes before the clinic opened. We barely made it in front of the cut off point. A friendly public healthcare worker approached us with a hand stamp and asked us who was getting vaccinated today. We indicated we were there for our son. To this she replied “Well are you and your wife getting the vaccine too?” We replied that we were not in the high risk group so no we were not. She told us to not worry about it and that as long as we were there we should get it. We still declined, again, stressing we were not part of the high risk group. At this point she indicated that we really SHOULD get it now that we were there. We still declined. She gave us three hand stamps anyway.

    I was no less then shocked and appalled at this. Not only were they not REFUSING vaccines to non high risk people (a detraction from the position laid out by the region as indicated at www.durhamregion.com), they were ENCOURAGING those in line to get the shot even if they weren’t high risk.

    As I looked down the line what could be referred to as entourages of people where children were brought to the mall with both parents, siblings, grandparents and in some cases what appeared to be aunts and uncles, I just shook my head as my wife and son left me to stand in line while she took him shopping in an effort to free up space in the line.
    Now, in fairness, as I stood in the line for three hours a different health care worker came down the line and indicated that people that were not in the high risk group should leave. However, she did qualify this by indicated that those who insisted on being vaccinated would not be refused. (yet another mixed message)

    The real problem, as I saw it that day, was not supply of the vaccine or number of clinics. The REAL problem was mismanagement of the supply and mismanagement of the delivery/vaccination process. This was exacerbated by people with selfish attitudes who frankly don’t give a damn about what is right and wrong. They don’t’ care that, for some, this vaccine is truly a matter of life and death and it matters not to them that they don’t need it like some others do.

    On a side note though, although it may or may not make sense to have a clinic in Ajax, I’m more than a little shocked at the absence of Ms Jordan at this meeting. I’d like to know what municipal business was so pressing that she it over what could arguably be one of the most important meetings at the Regional Level of this term.

    Karem : The meeting was October 22nd before the tragic death of Justin on the 26th and in the media on the 27th of October. From the minutes they were only expecting a participation rate of 10% as seasonal flu had a participation rate for vaccine program of 5%. However I do concur that since the beginning in August this was referred to as a pandemic it was an important meeting and should not have been missed. I have emailed the names that Christine posted and asked what the selection criteria was. Even if a subset of the highrisk groups could have been accommodated in Ajax, they should have attempted it. This causes me to ask a general question of what comes first for a Regional councillor ? Municipal Business at the local level for which there are 2 counillors for that purpose or Regional Business for which there are 3 on duty. The minutes do not specify local business or regional business.

  5. SM Says:

    I’d hate to think of what would happen if this swine flu ever becomes a full blown outbreak and thousands of people start dying or becoming ill. It doesn’t strike me that we’re prepared for such a thing. Obviously history hasn’t taught us anything. We haven’t learned from our mistakes. You’d think they would have been more prepared for this u after what they went through with SARS. This does bring into question how prepared we really are for these types of things.

    There’s really no way of knowing whether the people standing in those lines actually have a legit reason for being there. I’ve got minor health issues and should probably be there myself. There’s no doubt in my mind that there’s a lot of scammers who line up and have no health problems. It’s my understanding that you don’t need to provide proof that you have these health conditions

    Karem: Probably not, it’s the honour system I guess. I would be curious as to where everyone lives that is going to Pickering, it’s not fair if East Scarborough was also coming out due to insufficient clinics in Scarborough.

  6. Doug Cornell Says:

    I have to agree with Brian Johnson. The Health Departments blatant mixed messages and disregard for the high priority groups is in my opinion disgusting. If this was done in an orderly fashion dealing with only the high priority groups, then this group could have been dealt with in a quick and orderly manner. Instead we still have high priority cases out there waiting to try and get in while we don’t turn anyone away. I personally will remember this at election time whether it be civic, provincial or federal. They are all to blame and have done absolutely done nothing to try and correct the situation other then blame each other and give the handling a rating of a zero. The rating of a zero should go to all of the politicians who sit by on their hands blaming others while doing nothing. I would like to see someone stand up and take some action for a change, that is someone worth voting for. it is also terrible that in our society that we have so much disregard for those in need that we would not be embarrassed to have taken the spot of someone who could die from this or put a small baby at risk.

    Karem: Thanks for comment. It is everyone’s fault. I also blame the Region for not having a dedicated meeting with the committee that is made up of Councillors as they are suppose to be the citizens advocates. If you look at the agenda for the meeting that was missed it was not 100% clear that H1N1 planning would be discussed either, it seems advertising geared to kids was getting a higher priority. Yes that is important but perhaps not so much in the current time frame.

  7. SM Says:

    The Ajax newspaper ran a story on this. I see that your name was mentioned Karem.

    I know there’s a lot of angry people out there. There’s also lots of finger pointing going on in government. This is not the time to be playing politics. The people of Canada need to be realistic. They can’t possibly expect the vaccine to be given out to over 33 million Canadians in a single week. This isn’t something that is done overnight.

    It’s amazing how people can find the time to stand in line for 11 hours but can’t find the time to cast a vote at election time. Now only if we could have the same turnouts at the polls.

    Karem: I saw that, they took it from the facebook group, I use my maiden name with my married name so people from my days before marriage can find me :). Everything public ends up political at some point but I feel that if a subset of the high risk can be looked after in their own community it would be better.

  8. Christie McLardie Says:

    Hi Karem - Here is the lastest for you and your readers.

    NEWS FLASH - Region to hold TWO-DAY H1N1 vaccination clinic in Ajax

    Clinic is only for priority individuals.

    The Region will be holding an H1N1 vaccination clinic on Nov. 12 and 13 from 2 to 8 p.m. at the Ajax Community Centre, 75 Centennial Rd. for priority individuals only. The two-day clinic will be held in the HMS Ajax Room. Parking and entrance to the clinic are on the south side of the building.

    Priority individuals include:

    - people from six-months old to under 65-years old with chronic medical conditions;
    - pregnant women;
    - healthy children from six-months old to under five-years old;
    - persons residing in remote and isolated settings or communities;
    - health care workers; and
    - household contacts and care providers of persons at high risk who cannot be immunized or who may not respond to vaccines.

    The Region will notify residents of additional clinics as resources become available.

    For more information on H1N1 influenza or influenza in general, please visit http://www.durham.ca/health.asp?nr=/departments/health/flu/fluIndex.htm&setFooter=/includes/health/healthFooterDHCL.inc or call Durham Health Connection Line at 905-666-6241 or 1-800-841-2729.

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