The flu can be an ongoing threat in long term care homes all year round, but during the fall through early spring outbreaks of respiratory infections are a higher risk. Outbreaks lead to significant rates of morbidity and mortality amongst the long-term care home (LTCH) residents. LTCH residents are more susceptible to acute respiratory infections because of potentially weakened immune systems as a result of chronic illnesses and decreased lung capacity. Institutional settings are also a contributing factor to outbreaks.
The Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care developed a guide including resources and recommendations to assist health care providers in long-term care settings prevent infection and control outbreaks among residents.
The guide can be accessed here: http://bit.ly/1wcfoWC