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Patients at increased risk of infection as Elisabeth Bruyere cuts 30 cleaners
Cuts to cleaning staff at Elizabeth Bruyere Hospital in Ottowa, Canada, are putting patients at increased risk of infection, warns the union that represents the workers.
The hospital is in the process of reducing its staff by what the union claims is the equivalent to 30 cleaners in the latest cuts to a hospital that, like others across Ontario, is dealing with a five-year funding freeze.
"The province has cut the Bruyere budget by 20% in real terms over four years," says Brian Grant of the Canadian Union of Public Employees. "Patients receive less care because of the nursing team cuts last year.
Now with this next round of cuts, they will be vulnerable to an increased risk of hospital acquired infections."The hospital's chief operating officer Daniel Levac told the Ottowa Citizen that he is confident that the cuts will not affect patients. "We are confident the measures being put in place will allow us to provide the necessary housekeeping to adhere to required infection control practices and ensure the safety of our patients," he said.
"It is difficult, but we are doing it," he said, claiming that despite the hospital was continuing to provide high quality care and to keep hospital infection rates below the provincial average but adding that with further cuts, this record would not continue... "Future years of 0% cost of living for an organisation such as Bruyere cannot continue without having an impact on service levels," he warned.
An Ontario's Auditor General report quotes studies which estimated that healthcare needs a 5.8 per cent increase in funding each year to keep pace with the costs of drugs and medical technologies, which are rising faster than the general rate of inflation.
10th December 2015