Public Health Declares Community-Wide Influenza Outbreak for Local Area

On Thursday (January 4th), Medical Officer of Health Dr. Rosana Salvaterra declared a community-wide influenza outbreak in Peterborough due to a recent increase in the number of confirmed local cases.

“We now have influenza outbreaks at four long term care homes in our area, and have seen an increased number of patients presenting at the PRHC Emergency Department with influenza-like illness,” says Dr. Salvaterra. “We have been seeing an increase in influenza cases ever since the Christmas holiday began and now we have enough evidence to believe there is widespread transmission occurring.”

“There is no reason to believe that this year’s vaccine is not a strong match with circulating strains,” she adds.

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Dr. Salvaterra notes that all of the long-term care homes in outbreak have instructed staff who did not get the flu shot to take antiviral medication:

“Antivirals can be effective as a second line treatment to prevent influenza spread when outbreaks occur or to treat an influenza infection, if used early," she says. "Hopefully, most caregivers have been immunized but if not, antivirals, masks and good hand washing can help protect those who are vulnerable.”

Most healthy individuals are able to weather the virus and will not require a visit to the doctor. For those who are feeling unwell, Dr. Salvaterra recommends that you stay home to avoid spreading the virus.

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PEOPLE WHO ARE AT GREATER RISK

People with compromised immune systems, other chronic diseases, or even a healthy woman in her last trimester of pregnancy are at greater risk of hospitalization and death from influenza.

Anyone who has symptoms of influenza and risk factors for severe illness or complications should seek medical care as soon as possible.

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Apsley Residents Still Without A Family Physician In Town

When Dr. Wagdy Rayes retired in June after an amazing 40 years run as a family physician in Apsley (which has a population of about 2,300), the township in Peterborough County was left without a doctor.

Rayes had approximately 1,140 patients rostered to his practice, and many of those were left without a GP when he closed his practice at the Apsley Medical Centre on Burleigh Street.

The commitment was made to find the town a new GP as soon as possible—and that commitment remains, according to the Peterborough Family Healthy Team (PHFT).

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A North Kawartha Hub clinic with a nurse practioner opened behind Dr. Rayes' old office for those who couldn't join an established family practice. When a new doctor is found, PFHT says this Nurse Practitioner hub will be integrated into this practice to provide all patients of Apsley with a wholesome practice.

But the Nurse Practitioner Hub can only provide care to patients that are enrolled with them as they are currently at full capacity, meaning PFHT is pursuing a temporary solution to support these folks who can't use the hub. They are exploring a telemedicine approach which still needs to be planned out before being implemented.

“It is Peterborough Family Health Team’s responsibility to ensure all residents of the City & Country of Peterborough have access to adequate primary healthcare services,” says Lori Richey, Executive Director for the PFHT. “We continue to search for a permanent family doctor to take over the primary care for patients, but in the meantime we need a solution. People cannot go without access to care.”

A telemedicine service would provide a virtual family doctor to patients in the community. This temporary clinic would also enroll patients and smoothly transition them over to a new family doctor once recruited and that practice is up and running.

In the meantime, those living in Apsley who require care can access it through the following means:

-> The Lakefield VON Nurse Practitioner Clinic: Open Wednesdays and Thursdays, and located at 150 Strickland Street in Lakefield. (Residents are encouraged to book an appointment by calling 705.651.4866.)

-> Peterborough Regional Health Centre: If you urgently require health care services, you are advised to go to your local hospital at 1 Hospital Drive in Peterborough.

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Peterborough Police Service On Mental Illness And Looking After Their Own

On Bell Let's Talk Day, Peterborough Police put out a powerful release about the importance of looking after the needs of their own. Read it below...

"The Peterborough Police Service supports Bell Let’s Talk Day and the fight to end stigma around mental illness.
 
For our Service, the wellness of all of our members, sworn and civilian, is crucial. The work of providing emergency service presents unique personal challenges that are not limited to operational staff.
 
We continue to seek opportunities that help our members cope with the rigors of their work and we have launched a variety of initiatives to ensure our employees are healthy both in mind and body.

These initiatives include an Employee and Family Assistance Plan that provides staff and their immediate family members with the ability to contact any registered psychologist, social worker or psychotherapist for confidential support and assistance.
 
In January of 2015, our Service implemented a Wellness Program for our members who are exposed to traumatic incidents on a more frequent basis. The mandatory aspect of this program removes stigma and ensures consistent check-ins.
 
In addition, five senior leaders completed a certificate course from Shepell and Queen’s University on 'Leading a Mentally Healthy Workplace' focusing on creating a healthy work environment and removing stigma.
 
Our Service recognizes that no one is immune to mental illness and we continue to build on the internal programs we have in place to ensure our members are properly supported."

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PTBOCanada Featured Post: Why Pelvic Health Physiotherapy Is More Than Just Doing Your Kegels

PTBOCanada Featured Post: Why Pelvic Health Physiotherapy Is More Than Just Doing Your Kegels

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Calorie Tallies Will Now Appear On Menus At Approximately 80 Local Food Premises

Local residents will now be able to make more informed food decisions at certain food premises thanks to Ontario’s new “Healthy Menu Choices Act” that took effect January 1, 2017.

The new legislation only affects food service providers with 20 or more locations in the province. This means calorie tallies will now be seen on menus at approximately 80 local food premises, according to Peterborough Public Health.

EASIER TO GET CALORIE INFORMATION NOW

“More and more people are paying close attention to what they are eating, so providing this calorie information is one way to encourage healthier food choices,” says Dr. Rosana Salvaterra, Medical Officer of Health. “For those who aren’t aware of how many calories are in certain foods, providing this information directly on the menu will help them better understand how to balance out their caloric intake throughout the day.”

Residents will now see the number of calories for each food and beverage item included on the menus, labels or tags at several local food service providers, such as restaurants, coffee shops, convenience stores, grocery stores and movie theatres.

Food service providers are also required to post an educational statement for customers about average daily caloric needs. For an updated list of local food premises affected by the legislation, visit peterboroughpublichealth.ca.

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The Invisible Bully: Peterborough Boy Pens Powerful Letter About Living With A Concussion

The PVNCCDSB shared a powerful letter on their Facebook page (see in its entirety below) from Grade 6 St. Catherine Catholic Elementary School student Jack Crawford. The 11-year-old, who plays hockey for the Minor Peewee AA Petes, wrote about what it's like to live with a concussion—"I had my own invisible bully in my brain but I couldn’t stand up to it," he eloquently says.

His mother Amelia tells PTBOCanada seeing her child suffering through this was devastating: "A concussion is a Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), and 'traumatic' would be how I would describe this experience as a parent. To see your child suffer physically, socially and emotionally is devastating. I would tell Jack over and over again that 'God always has a way of making something good come from difficult.' Now that Jack has had a chance to tell his story, he truly feels like good has come from his struggle, which is amazing."

Jack Crawford

Jack Crawford

Here is the letter Jack wrote...

I am very lucky kid. I have a great family, I have lots of good friends, I play on a great hockey team, and school is fun. I am grateful for all of these things, but something happened to me that has changed how I felt about everything.

About one year ago, while I was outside playing, I ran straight into a pole. It sounds funny, it probably even looked funny, but it was a big deal and it changed my life. I suffered from a pretty bad concussion, and I had no idea what impact it would have on me. I thought a concussion was just a big headache, but it was so much more than that.

For about a week after my concussion, I had to miss school and after-school activities. I slept for days. I couldn’t stand to be near a light, see a screen, read or do anything that I had to focus on. I slowly started to feel okay but I was very frustrated when I started to feel a bit better and I couldn’t do anything. No TV, no reading, no screens. All I was allowed to do was go outside and walk.

I went back to school a couple weeks later, and I thought because I felt good enough to go back to school that I was totally better. I didn’t realize concussions lasted a long time. The sound of the bell bothered me and I couldn’t go out on the schoolyard because it felt like there was too much going on. My relationships with my friends seemed strange and I was really sensitive about everything. I felt like people were making me sad a lot easier than before. I was acting funny and I never thought before I spoke.

When people joked around with me I thought they were being serious and took it personally. I wasn’t myself. I tried to be cool but I was just being bold and weird. I was angry at myself for not being ‘me.’ Whenever I woke up in the morning I told myself, ‘This is a new day and I can be myself again.’ But, I would come home from school or hockey crying all the time. It seemed to me that everyone I was around didn’t like me. It was like I had my own invisible bully in my brain but I couldn’t stand up to it.

My parents did lots of things to try to help me feel better, but nothing seemed to be helping me. I was still getting good grades in school, but I could feel I didn’t have the same ability. I was missing important details because I was getting so distracted. I had trouble focusing, something changed with my concentration. Even when I was on the ice (which is my favourite place to be), I wasn’t able to pay attention. I would always be upset with myself because of that. I knew I was missing little key notes in drills, but I couldn’t do anything about it. I would cry every night after hockey because when my coaches tried to give me advice I felt like they were disappointed with me, because I was frustrated. They were really just trying to help me like they always do.

Nobody ever knew I was so upset all the time (except for my family) because I wouldn’t break down in front of anyone else. All of this happened because a bump to my head! I think it would be easier to have a cast because then everyone would see that I had something wrong with me. But I looked fine so people just thought I was being weird.

I am feeling better now. I had massages, I went to a chiropractor, my doctor, and did different vision exercises to help my brain speed. My parents make sure I eat better (because I wanted sugar all the time) and I always get lots of sleep now. So, I don’t know what made me get better, but I am glad I feel more like myself again.

I still get tired really easily, my attention still isn’t where it was before, and I know I am not the same as I was before, but that’s okay. I just want other kids to know that one concussion changed my life. I want other kids to know that even if you are feeling well enough to play sports again doesn’t mean your ability to learn and emotions are all back to normal.

I am lucky that I feel way better now. —by Jack Crawford


Jack's mom Amelia reiterates to parents the importance of taking a concussion seriously:

"My plea to other parents would be to not underestimate the devastating short and long-term effects of concussion. Your son/daughter might be upset about missing sports or activities, but our job is not to please our children—it's to protect them. Please listen to coaches, doctors, educators and, most importantly, your child, if a concussion is suspected."

PVNC has great concussion resources available here.

**Please share this post with others that you think would be interested in learning what it's like to experience this.

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PTBOCanada Featured Post: Pulse Physiotherapy Has Had Amazing First Year In Business

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Inspired by Amy Schumer Photo Peterborough Dad Just Wrote How Dads Feel About Their Daughters

Amy Schumer posted a photo of herself on Monday (November 30th) to her Facebook and Twitter pages that renowned photographer took Annie Leibovitz took. Schumer's caption to the photo: "Beautiful, gross, strong, thin, fat, pretty, ugly, sexy, disgusting, flawless, woman. Thank you Annie Leibovitz."

Amy Schumer posted the above photo to her social media channels

Amy Schumer posted the above photo to her social media channels

A Peterborough father and husband, Jason Wilkins, shared the viral post on his Facebook page along with this powerful message that most every Dad can relate to:

"I love everything about this.

I've witnessed female body image issues run rampant through my family. Now, seeing it in my 9 year old daughter - it's heart breaking. If only the women in my life could see themselves through my eyes. You're all beautiful. Stop letting the media in, and spend more time loving yourselves."

Jason's Facebook post

Jason's Facebook post

"When I saw that post by Amy Schumer, it instantly made me happy," Wilkins tells PTBOCanada of his eloquent Facebook post. "We need more of that—much much more where our daughters can see that being a strong, successful woman isn't contingent on a small waist line."

Jason and Averie

Jason and Averie

"My daughter Averie is a gymnast, artist, silly dancing, practical joke making, loving, caring, bright shining light," Wilkins tells PTBOCanada. "She makes me smile everyday, which is why it kills me when that smile fades and gives way to anxiety and low self esteem, like, 'Look at my stomach Dad, look how fat I am.' As a father, you want your little girl to grow up strong, opinionated, passionate—but more than anything, you want them to love themselves and truly know their worth, without any doubt. So, hearing from your 9-year-old that she is too fat—well, I couldn't feel more helpless."

Wilkins is frustrated by what his daughter sees in the media. He tells PTBOCanada this:

"With the strong pull of media, and the continued push for women to look better, be thinner, have better skin, have better hair, etc. etc, how do our daughter's escape this? I don't have the answer, but I will continue to tell her and show her how much she is loved—how much her brothers, stepmother, mother, grandparents and friends care about her unconditionally."

So... how do we change things? Share your input on our Facebook page.
 

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A Bridgenorth Man Devised "The Bacon Experiment" To Lose Weight

Bridgenorth father Dan Quibell, 42, has struggled with his weight since he was a kid—and was old enough to go to the store and fill up on pop and chips every day.

"Me at age 5 when I was the skinny kid and the fastest runner in kindergarten." —Dan

"Me at age 5 when I was the skinny kid and the fastest runner in kindergarten." —Dan

"Me at age 13 when my doctor told me I was 'obese' when I was eating a big bag of chips, a cholesterol bar and a large pop for lunch every day." —Dan

"Me at age 13 when my doctor told me I was 'obese' when I was eating a big bag of chips, a cholesterol bar and a large pop for lunch every day." —Dan

Dan tried working out in high school and eating better, but that didn't help much at all. He kept gaining weight into adulthood—until he hit 260 pounds.

"That's my wife and myself at near my heaviest weight. At about 250 lbs. from a couple years ago." —Dan

"That's my wife and myself at near my heaviest weight. At about 250 lbs. from a couple years ago." —Dan

Dan a year ago before he started The Bacon Experiment

Dan a year ago before he started The Bacon Experiment

"In the past 20 years, I have tried weight watchers, low fat diets, vegetarianism, fruitarian diet and a vegan diet," Dan tells PTBOCanada. "Every crazy thing I came across that seemed to make sense I tried—smoothies, juicing and the list goes on. Some things worked better than others but I always lost muscle and the weight came back FAST."

A year ago, that all changed when Dan says he found a podcast called "The Fat Burning Man" that talked about eating fat to burn fat and get lean.

Dan at the doctor's office the day before he started The Bacon Experiment

Dan at the doctor's office the day before he started The Bacon Experiment

The podcast got his attention, and he devised something he calls "The Bacon Experiment", a clever name he came up with.

"I learned as much as I could and started eating bacon and eggs and sausages, and the pounds started melting away," he tells PTBOCanada. "I weighed about 240 lbs when I started, and a year later I was down to 212 lbs. I felt great and had energy to spare so I found myself going to the gym 3 times a week, playing with my kids more at the park and going for walks listening to hundreds of hours of podcasts and audio books."

"I did low carb for a year," Dan adds. "And I ate bacon and eggs for breakfast for most days during that time. But I did bacon only—30 pieces a day—for 30 days straight, from October 1st to October 30th of this year." That pushed Dan's weight down a further 20 pounds, to 193 pounds.

For his experiment, Dan says he used local pastured bacon free of GMOs and free of antibiotics. He avoided processed meats.

Dan the day after his bacon experiment ended

Dan the day after his bacon experiment ended

Dan believes bacon can change someone's life if they eat it with the purpose of not eating wheat and sugar. "I ate only bacon for 30 days—60 pounds worth—and lost about 20 lbs of fat and lowered my blood pressure by 30 points. I ate bacon to help others lose weight and regain their health. I ate bacon to make a difference! Am I crazy? Or am I into something here?"

Dan tells PTBOCanada some of his friends have started doing the low carb thing themselves after seeing his results. "Three of them started in the first week of November. All three are down 12-15 lbs each."

Dan is getting more and more interest and inquiries about his Bacon Experiment—he has appeared on The Wolf 101.5 radio in Peterborough to talk about it—and plans to write an E-book about it to share with others.

What do you think about his experiment? Tell us on our Facebook page. (You can contact Dan here.)

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The 2015 List Of Peterborough Flu Clinic Dates

The PCCHU has announced their list of Flu Clinic dates. To book an appointment, call 705-743-1000, ext. 349. The Clinics will be run from 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m., and are subject to change:

  • November 14, 2015

  • November 28, 2015

  • December 5, 2015

  • December 19, 2015

  • January 9, 2016

  • January 16, 2016

There is also a search tool that you can use to find a clinic near you offering the service.

[Contributed by PtboCanada's Evan Holt]

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