Maun Lemke Maun Lemke Maun Lemke

Donna Manring, DTR

What are the key interventions for the prevention and management of influenza outbreaks in residential care facilities?
What role does food planning and preparation have in preventing and managing influenza outbreaks?

Residential care facilities are high-risk environments for influenza due to communal living arrangements and the continual close proximity of residents. Nursing homes are especially high-risk environments due to the older age of residents and the high prevalence of chronic medical conditions. Meal preparation and delivery can play a critical role in reducing the risk of influenza outbreaks.

Facilities that do not have a system for tracking food safety and hygiene are at high risk for influenza transmission and places their residents at risk. Your kitchen could be a starting point for spreading bacteria and viruses. Staff can optimize food safety by using a systematic approach which includes identifying and assessing infection control critical factors, evaluating/analyzing the assessment information, developing and consistently implementing pertinent approaches, and monitoring the effectiveness of interventions and revising them as necessary.  

Facilities must identify key individuals to participate in the assessment of infection control and consequences. Organizations need to develop operational steps critical to control, prevent or eliminate spreading the risk of illness. The key for success is education, training, and monitoring of all staff and volunteers to reduce influenza transmission.  

At the completion of this session, the participants will be able to:
  1. Recognize, implement and manage infection control standards of practice in food services to reduce transmission of influenza.
  2. Implement policy development with tracking records for compliance.
  3. Identify and develop a higher profile for the key practices in infection control to avoid spreading influenza.
  4. Learn practical approaches in educating team members in the importance of food handling and safety.
  5. Understand the financial cost to facilities that do not have a system supporting infection control standards.

Attendees will learn the key interventions for the prevention and management of influenza outbreaks in residential care facilities. This session will include lecture, facilitated group discussions, interactive exercises, checklists, worksheets, and question/answer.

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