Tag: Critical

‘Critical’ public health info slow to reach New Brunswick parents

FREDERICTON, N.B. — By John Chilibeck

Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Daily Gleaner

New Brunswick’s acting chief medical health officer was so concerned with the rise of respiratory viruses earlier this month he held a news conference — the first he’d hosted in months.

At the Jan. 9 presser, Dr. Yves Léger stressed the importance of flu and COVID vaccinations and to follow safe hygiene practices given the rise of RSV and Strep-A infections.

That week alone, five people in the province died from influenza and COVID, and six preschool children needed hospital treatment for the viruses, according to the province.

In the period just before that, between Dec. 10 and 30, a total of 26 New Brunswickers died from respiratory viruses, including a child under five.

And yet, a Jan. 12 letter Léger addressed to families of school communities talking about the steps people could take to safeguard themselves and others didn’t immediately go out to all schools.

The provincial government sent the letter to the school districts, which were responsible for distributing them. Some schools didn’t send them to parents right away.

École Sainte-Anne in Fredericton, for instance, sent the letter to parents Jan. 18 – six days after Léger had issued it. The school is part of Francophone South School District.

Likewise, Anglophone South School District reported that four of its schools sent the notice out late, while Anglophone North School District told Brunswick News it inadvertently sent the notice out to all its parents on Jan. 18, due to a technical problem.

Brunswick News asked the Health Department last week why the notice did not go to all parents promptly and at the same time, given it was based on the advice of the chief medical health officer, who has a duty to

N.B. government wants more hospitals under critical state procedure

The New Brunswick health department has requested to place four New Brunswick hospitals under a critical state procedure, which would allow staff to move long-term care patients to nursing or special care homes.

The plan would alleviate pressure on hospitals as Horizon Health hospitals in New Brunswick are, on average, at 106 per cent capacity, according to a news release from Jan. 12.

“We’re trying to ease the congestion in the emergency rooms, and having the long-term care patients go out to a nursing home or special care home with services is one of the options,” said New Brunswick Health Minister Bruce Fitch.

The Saint John Regional Hospital was placed under a critical state on Jan. 4. 

Government officials confirmed on Friday that the same request was made for four other hospitals — the Dr. Everett Chalmers Regional Hospital, Oromocto Public Hospital, Upper River Valley Hospital and Hotel-Dieu of St. Joseph.

“I know (Social Development Minister Jill Green) is considering that at this time. We’ve seen it go forward in Saint John, and that would alleviate some of the pressures and some of the issues up at the DECH (Dr. Everett Chalmers Hospital),” said Fitch.

The Department of Social Development also confirmed on Friday that they re-evaluated the critical state at the Saint John Regional Hospital this week. The department decided to maintain the critical state for the remaining two weeks of the original 30-day time frame.

This decision is not made lightly, the Department of Social Development told CTV News in an email. It’s only made when a hospital’s emergency room and acute care units are overcapacity and when critical surgeries are being cancelled due to lack of available hospital beds, the email said.

Jan Sealy, the president of the

Preconception period critical to baby’s health: study

“You want to stop that [smoking and drinking] before you get pregnant because you often don’t realise initially that you are pregnant,” Black says. “By the time you find out, some of the crucial structures in the spine and the brain have begun to form.”


And while the majority of women take folic acid once they discover they are pregnant, it needs to be taken for three months before conception to have the most benefit on neural tube defects – defects of the head and the spine – including spina bifida.

Around half of women are overweight or obese entering pregnancy, Black adds. “If you have maternal obesity at the time of conception, you’re more likely to produce a baby that is overweight and more likely that child will be obese.”

Losing weight during pregnancy is not recommended, so any interventions at that point are “too little too late”.

Like many women, Hayley Scutts-Gullery, now 36, had no idea there was anything specific she had to change before trying to conceive.

She and her husband wanted to start trying for a baby in the next six to 12 months and, having witnessed the struggles of friends, the only thing her mind was whether fertility might be an issue.

The Sydney resident had put on 15 kilograms during COVID and wanted to lose some of that weight, but mainly because she knew she would gain more weight during pregnancy.

So when her mum heard an ad on the radio for PreBabe, a world-first research trial exploring how losing weight in the six to 12 months before conception improves outcomes for both the mother and baby, Scutts-Gullery signed up.

The educational component of the program was the first time anyone had explained the implications of being overweight or obese during

Opinion: The critical need for better senior care insurance

Government must ensure affordable access to senior care insurance by collaborating with private insurance providers.

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As Canada’s demographics shift, the challenge of caring for a growing elderly population and the necessity for better support for senior care cannot be overstated. With government-funded senior care being limited, private insurance is an underutilized tool that can help millions of Canadians age with security and dignity.

While government-funded provincial health care covers most major medical treatments, senior care is generally not one of them. When care is available through the public system, it is typically in the form of a co-pay, with the user paying a portion of the costs, and wait lists are shockingly long.

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HOW TO: Trusted sources — always keep a critical eye on who is presenting health information online and what their true motives are


Drink apple cider vinegar to control your blood sugar. Microwaves give you cancer. Baby carrots are soaked in formaldehyde.

Everywhere we turn, we are inundated with health information. It seems that everyone has an opinion and, sometimes, it is hard to know who or what to believe.

Felicia Newell stresses how important it is to be careful of the content we consume, especially on social media.

Newell is a clinical dietitian in the health-care system and registered dietitian in private practice in St. John’s, N.L. In private practice, her aim is supporting clients with meeting nutrient needs, weight management, chronic illness management such as diabetes, cancer and heart disease, digestive health conditions and more.

She is quite aware of all the false health information that is circulated, especially online.

“There is a rising increase in misinformation on social media from unqualified experts, particularly around health and nutrition,” said Newell.

“There is a rising increase in misinformation on social media from unqualified experts, particularly around health and nutrition,” says Felicia Newell, a dietitian in St. John’s, N.L. Contributed - Contributed
“There is a rising increase in misinformation on social media from unqualified experts, particularly around health and nutrition,” says Felicia Newell, a dietitian in St. John’s, N.L. Contributed – Contributed


But why are we so quick to believe what we see on social media over what qualified experts say?

Social media influencers get to the status of influencer for a reason, explained Newell. They educate themselves in marketing and growing an online presence or platform for the purpose of promoting their brand, message, or product. They try different strategies and messages to see what works or what doesn’t and, because of this, they know how to get engagement and sell their product, brand and ideas.

Scientists and experts, on the other hand, have spent all their time training and educating themselves in their field and, once they become experts, are also typically working full-time

CUPE: Newfoundland and Labrador 2023 Spending plan Ignores Critical Wellness Treatment Employees

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ST. JOHN’S, Newfoundland and Labrador — It is distinct that the province is no lengthier in an financial crisis with the government’s launch of its revised figures from 2022-23 of an more $1.5 billion in earnings previous fiscal yr. However, the 2023-24 funds produced nowadays reinvests none of this profits into general public sector workers, leaving employees in Well being Treatment, Libraries, Housing, Transition and Group Properties, and Instruction to have their earnings further more eroded by substantial inflation.

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A personal care assistant who gained $46,293 in April 2020 would have to be earning $51,461 in January 2023 just to continue to keep up with inflation. As an alternative, the government’s system would have that PCA earning $47,218. “Why does the govt assume people today to do the job for much less each and every calendar year? A PCA is building $4,242 much less in 2023 than they did in 2020 owing to inflation,” stated CUPE Newfoundland and Labrador president Sherry Hillier. “This is why we have a retention difficulty. Who would work for less each and every yr?”

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“This finances promised $23 million to Wellbeing Treatment staff, but none will go to vital personnel who are liable for cooking, cleaning, and changing and caring for people. These individuals are leaving the sector since they cannot make finishes satisfy,” claimed Hillier. “Recruitment initiatives are terrific, but they do not necessarily mean everything if we aren’t having to pay men and women what they are worthy of.”

“We’ve been campaigning for elevated investing in general public housing for several years. Now, the federal government promised to invest $17 million to repair service and renovate vacant models,” explained Hillier, “but we have to have to speak about retention all over again. The fact is

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