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Rallying staff say patients, care, infection control all adversely affected by healthcare cuts
Canadian Union of Public Employees rallied last Friday against healthcare cuts, arguing that it is untrue for hospital and regional health network administrators to suggest that patients, care levels and infection control will not be adversely affected by a new round of cuts at Health Sciences North.
The cuts touch many areas of patient care including nursing, environmental services, administration, hospital linens, and other hospital support services.
At the rally held at the Paris Street entrance to HSN, staff called for adequate funding for the hospital, which operates at capacity or overcapacity almost daily.
The anticipated budget cuts in the millions of dollars will mean the elimination of hundreds of hours for cleaners and personal support workers (PSWs), and others, amounting to 113 full-time equivalent positions, and "will most certainly have a detrimental impact on patient care," says Dave Shelefontiuk, president of CUPE 1623.
He argues that many aspects of direct patient care will be diminished by the proposed cuts to PSWs, down from four staff on a shift, to three. The reduction in housekeeping hours will mean some tasks will not get done and environmental cleaning will suffer.
CUPE's Ontario Council of Hospital Unions secretary-treasurer Sharon Richer, claims that Ontario hospitals are funded at a much lower level than hospitals in other provinces.
"All these looming cuts amount to less direct care contact with patients and an increased risk of infection as patient rooms are not given a deep clean when the hospital is overcrowded," she argues.
Image courtesy of www.sudbury.com
20th September 2018