Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Nurses warn of unsafe workload in Niagara ER's; Caplan asked to appoint investigator

Linda Haslam Stroud wrote in “Patients suffer because of NHS inaction” (Aug.12, 2009 St. Catharines Standard):

“Patients visiting the emergency departments of St. Catharines General and/or Greater Niagara General Hospitals are at risk due to the refusal of the Niagara Health System to adequately staff the department with registered nurses.

The Ontario Nurses' Association has been attempting to work with the NHS for a very long time to address this issue that risks the health and well-being of our patients.

The failure of the NHS to adequately staff its St. Catharines ER with RNs became so serious that ONA recently turned to what's called an Independent Assessment Committee. The IAC released a report in April containing 30 recommendations - the most important being to increase RN staffing in the ER.

Yet despite these recommendations, the first action taken by the hospital was to cut more RNs from this busy department.

The RNs left working in the ER face unsafe workloads - they simply cannot be expected to care safely for these patients.

Having exhausted every available option, ONA has officially requested the Minister of Health appoint an investigator under provisions of the Public Hospitals Act.

Should you or your loved one find yourselves in the ER of St. Catharines General or Greater Niagara General, please understand the failure of the NHS to adequately staff them is beyond the control of these hard-working nurses.”


Will Jim Bradley, Kim Craitor, David Caplan, or Dalton McGuinty bother to publicly respond to the claims made by Haslam Stroud? When will the Liberals respond?

Are RN’s at the St. Catharines and Niagara Falls Emergency Rooms facing workloads great enough to affect and cause danger to patients?

Is it the failure of the NHS to adequately staff the ER – or is it the failure of the Dalton McGuinty Liberal-majority government, along with this government's ideological infatuation with single-payer monopoly health care? McGuinty found billions to bailout General Motors (GM) – but none for adequate ER staff?

We all know if this story had appeared when Good Ole Jim Bradley was in opposition, that a sanctimonious Jim (...aided, abetted, and amplified by an eager, equally-'outraged' local Niagara press..!) would be blabbing up a storm of righteous indignance on the front steps of the hospital.
But now, that Bradley's own Liberals are in a majority government, the St.Catharines Standard Bradley Butt-wiper suddenly can't even bother to get a response for their local Liberal Jim Bradley!!!

Now, Good Ole Liberal Health Care Cutter Jim Bradley has, umm… gone fishin’… yeh, that's it... and won’t answer any questions, as his media friends loyally protect Bradley from scrutiny.

Now, under McGuinty’s incompetent Liberal government, it has reached the point where the ONA has to officially request the Minister of Health to appoint an investigator under provisions in the Public Hospitals Act?

That it has sadly come to this indicates yet another disturbing facet of McGuinty’s slimy Liberal health care duplicity.

What’s next - the appointment - not only of an investigator - but also the appointment of a provincial supervisor to take over the NHS, and the removal of the NHS board? Followed by a full, unfettered-by-Liberal-interference investigation by the ombudsman, the auditor (and the coroner's office, if necessary) into the activities of the NHS and its parent LHIN, topped by a criminal investigation into the Dalton McGuilty government’s handling of their health monopoly’s obligations?

Bring it on.

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