Preparing for flu in the Soo

OK, I blog a lot about Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario. Maybe it’s because I’m away from home, but usually it just cracks me up to read what the local Sooites are up to this week. Regardless, The Sault Star reports that the local university and college campuses are preparing for September and potential outbreaks of H1N1 virus.

Since swine flu emerged in April, Sault College’s health and safety committee started preparing a pandemic plan… Via e-mails and the school’s dozens of "infonet screens" throughout the building, students and staff were also bombarded with information about prevention and containment through, for example, handwashing, sneezing into the elbow and staying in your room or home if not feeling well. As well, hand sanitizer dispensers were placed in high-use areas, such as computer rooms, cafeteria and workout areas…

[Algoma University] also plans to put up information posters and bulletins reflecting the latest from the World Health Organization and distributing hand sanitizers to every employee…

The confined quarters of university and college dorms can lead to illness outbreaks, and handwashing signs and sanitizer are OK for trying to promote hand hygiene – if the medium grabs your attention and the message is compelling. Dirty Finger Al (pictured), my favourite Food Safety Infosheet, did just that, sparking dialogue among food handlers. Will the handwashing signs in Sault College and Algoma U spark dialogue, or go unnoticed by students come September?

Doo doo in the Soo

Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario is a very unique place. Lovingly called the Soo, home of the Bon Soo winter carnival and Greyhounds Ontario Hockey League team, many, including myself, call it home.

Today, while creeping on a fellow Saultite’s Facebook photos, I came across this picture (right). My workmate asked if cartwheeling was Canadian slang for something – I’m pretty sure it refers to the gymnastics move.

If you cartwheel in doo doo, wash your hands.