November 6, 2023

On Thursday, November 2, St. Joseph’s Health Centre Guelph (SJHCG) received communication from the Ministry of Long-Term Care (MLTC) regarding enhanced masking measures to be implemented across the organization by November 7, 2023. In an effort to continue to protect all residents, the MLTC has made the decision provincially to implement enhanced masking in all instances of prolonged resident contact.

As with all mandates received, the SJHCG IMS team has reviewed the mandate to determine how to implement these changes to keep our clients, staff and visitors safe. The decision has been made to implement masking in all clinical areas and for all forward facing activities with prolonged contact effective November 7, 2023. This means that all staff, physicians, volunteers and visitors will be required to wear a mask provided by SJHCG in all clinical areas and during all forward facing activities with prolonged contact such as Life Enrichment activities taking place in the auditorium or attending church services with residents.

As an organization, we continue to have robust Infection Prevention and Control (IPAC) measures in place. SJHCG continues to work in collaboration with WDG Public Health and is closely monitoring viral trends within our organization, locally and regionally to make informed, evidence-based decisions to ensure the safety of all clients, staff, and visitors.

Families and visitors will be allowed to remove their masks in their loved one’s rooms and in central areas when consuming food and will be required to wear a mask in all clinical areas. Staff are asked to remind families to wear their masks and provide education on how to properly wear a mask when required.

If a client resides in a shared room and is uncomfortable with visitors in their room removing their mask, a space will be made available for the client and their loved one to visit outside of the clients shared room.


A few reminders for all:

  • When wearing a mask provided by SJHCG, please ensure that you are wearing the mask correctly at all times ensuring that it covers both your nose and mouth.
  • Masks will be available at the front entrance and at the entrance to all units.
  • Ensure you are following the four moments of hand hygiene. Proper hand hygiene is the most effective line of defence against the spread of illness.
  • Remain vigilant. Conduct point-of-care risk assessments consistently and wear a mask if there is any potential risk of exposure to respiratory viral illness.
  • Adhere to the correct procedure to don and doff PPE when required.
  • All individuals entering an isolation room must be aware of the specific PPE requirements and any changes or additions required. Ensure you have removed all PPE when leaving the room and don a new mask.
  • If you feel unwell, please do not come to work. Instead, refer to the guidelines in the Employee Health Decision Tree for the appropriate next steps.
  • As the respiratory season continues, the best way to reduce transmission risk and potential serious complications is to protect yourself and your family by keeping your vaccinations up-to-date as per Public Health guidelines.

We would like to thank you all for your patience and cooperation as we navigate this coming respiratory illness season. As we move through this season, proactive decisions may be made quickly and those changes and their implementation will be communicated to you as quickly as possible.

– Infection Prevention and Control Lead