Hire wedding planners for flu clinics

Chairs. If Stephen Duckett, head bureaucratic honcho of our healthsystem, put out chairs for all the people lining up for H1N1 vaccinesthis week, I’d be OK with his bonus. 

Chairs. If Stephen Duckett, head bureaucratic honcho of our health system, put out chairs for all the people lining up for H1N1 vaccines this week, I’d be OK with his bonus.

It would show he thinks about people, not “populations.”

Yet, the Health Link advice line can no longer field calls from humans.

The Alberta Health Services Board held a public meeting Thursday. The bylaws forbid a member of the public from actually making a comment.

Stephen Duckett, Alberta Health Minister Ron Liepert, move over.

To manage the H1N1 crisis, we need a wedding planner.

Amy Slater is one. She runs Down to Their Socks Wedding & Event Planning and wonders why H1N1 clinics are in some strip malls.

“A better location would have been a venue with a huge parking lot that can facilitate many vehicles and would not affect day-to-day business such as, perhaps, the Calgary Farmers’ market or Crossroads Market.”

Ciara Dayken, CEO of Firefly Occasions Inc., would remedy the situation with an online form so paperwork is completed in advance. “Just like asking wedding guests for their meal choice before the wedding so the kitchen is prepared, the online form would ease lineups.”

She thinks there should be an online and offline way to make an appointment. “Then priority cases could be distinguished, just as we distinguish wedding VIPs who have special needs.”

Dayken understands planning means comfort. Just as she doesn’t want wedding guests asking the bride and groom organizational questions, she would spare the H1N1 clinic receptionist and medical staff. “I would have at least four co-ordinators at each clinic to make their way from person to person to see if they can make their experience better and answer any questions.”

She would try to reduce vaccine jitters with essential oil candles and calming music.

Like Amy Slater, Dayken questions the clinic venues.

“I would never advise a bride to invite 500 guests to a venue that fits max 150. Even if the entire 500 were not going to show up you must plan for them anyway.”

In the case of the H1N1 flu clinics, four clinics in a city of a million people is not enough.

The wedding planner can teach our health officials just how it’s supposed to be done. I suspect she would even offer them a chair.

 
 
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