Ford: First Come, First Served Flu Shot

Ford is shirking his responsibility to patients by not making health workers get their shots. I love Canada. I think it’s the greatest country in the world. But recently, I’ve noticed a big change….

Ford: First Come, First Served Flu Shot


Ford is shirking his responsibility to patients by not making health workers get their shots.

I love Canada. I think it’s the greatest country in the world.

But recently, I’ve noticed a big change.

I’ve noticed a stronger Canadian identity. I’ve noticed a more caring Canadian heart. And I’ve noticed a patient on the edge of despair and fear.

My heart aches for all Canadians that are struggling with something to do with their health or with their society. And I don’t feel like I’m seeing much love in government.

Last week, our Ontario Premier, Doug Ford, decided that healthcare workers won’t be required to go through an annual flu vaccination.

It means that the Ontario Patient Safety Board (the government agency responsible for healthcare safety) can keep putting vulnerable Ontarians in harm’s way.

The government wants more people to get flu shots. Well, I’ve just become a patient. And I’ve been facing frustration after frustration.

First, I went to a clinic in the basement of an IHSA hospital that didn’t even have a window. And they didn’t have in-house pharmacists. They also couldn’t explain how long it would take to get a flu shot and flu shots aren’t given in four hours.

My sister and I went to the Hospital for Sick Children (the hospital in Toronto that is responsible for healthcare safety). I asked to speak to the director of patient safety. I was told to wait, and that the director of the department I had questioned was not at his desk.

When my sister and I asked why, they said that they’re busy!

So I spent another half-hour trying to find a phone number to call. At one point, I tweeted asking the director of patient safety if we would be shot if he walked into the clinic where he was spending his free time. He responded that he would be happy to talk.

I was then contacted by the director of patient safety. He said he would arrange a consultation and that we could meet at my apartment in Toronto. While I waited for his call, he was watching Netflix on his phone. He then didn’t call.

Finally, his senior advisor called my name and that of my sister. He said that he knew she wouldn’t like the idea of getting a flu shot. He then asked us to leave and wouldn’t be able to accommodate our request.

I then started to think about how many people didn’t even have access to a flu shot.

Then I thought about my eight-year-old daughter.

She wasn’t planning on going to any flu shot clinic at all. I just made a text to her. “Do you wanna get a flu shot?” She replied, “Oh, sorry, I think I have strep throat,” and her voice cracked. I told her that you need to get a flu shot. She, of course, cried.

I know I need to break the bad news to Doug Ford.

If Doug Ford’s government doesn’t get its flu shot, they’re putting our own patients and our children in harm’s way. And they will be breaking Doug Ford’s law.

Doug Ford should go to a flu shot clinic himself and assure healthcare workers to get a flu shot.

Doug Ford is shirking his responsibility to patients by not making health workers get their shots.

After all, he is the Prime Minister. He has the power to do something.

Doug Ford needs to stand up for the patients who could be harmed if his government doesn’t get a flu shot.

Debbie Lacroix is a politician from the Ontario Liberal Party and was Director of Patient Safety and Quality Assurance from 2010 to 2018.

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