‘Critical staffing shortages in hospitals across Alberta’: Notley

3 months ago 15
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Several Alberta hospitals person been dealing with staffing shortages successful their exigency departments, including 2 of Edmonton’s busiest EDs.

On Friday, Alberta Health Services confirmed 18 attraction beds astatine the Royal Alexandra Hospital’s exigency section were temporarily closed “due to short-term staffing sum issues.”

Twelve of those beds were closed for conscionable 4 hours, AHS said.

“There was nary simplification successful attraction for patients successful the exigency section during those 4 hours and EMS was not diverted to debar the Royal Alexandra Hospital.”

Opposition NDP person Rachel Notley said Monday that furniture closures owed to staffing pressures aren’t isolated to the Royal Alex.

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“Over the past weeks, we person seen captious staffing shortages successful hospitals crossed Alberta.”

“This has led to furniture closures and cancelled surgeries and repeated exigency country closures successful the communities of Edson, St. Paul, Boyle, Elk Point, Gallahad, Westlock, Fairview, Rocky Mountain House, Cold Lake, Lac La Biche, High Prairie, Slave Lake, Wainwright, Rimbey and Lacombe.

“Here successful Edmonton, astatine the Royal Alex, 1 of the busiest exigency departments successful occidental Canada, they had to adjacent 18 beds, astir fractional its capacity, due to the fact that determination aren’t capable front-line health-care workers to run safely.”

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“Over the weekend, we learned that different of Edmonton’s busiest hospitals, the Grey Nuns, volition beryllium periodically closing its endoscopy portion implicit the adjacent fewer weeks and transporting exigency patients who request that work erstwhile the portion is closed, to different hospitals,” Notley said.

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AHS issued 2 notices connected Friday, advising of 2 different staffing shortages.

There volition beryllium nary doc overnight (from 10 p.m. to 7 a.m. daily) astatine the St. Theresa General Hospital exigency department successful Fort Vermillion from July 19 to July 31, AHS said. Nursing unit volition supply assessments and triage patients successful the ED and notation them to the Northwest Health Centre successful High Level, if needed. EMS calls volition beryllium re-routed to the Northwest Health Centre (81 kilometres away) during this time.

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Also, the Sacred Heart Community Health Centre successful McLennan was without an on-site exigency section doc implicit the weekend, AHS said. EMS calls were re-routed to High Prairie Health Complex (50 km away), Peace River Community Health Centre (80 km away) oregon Valleyview Healthcare Centre (90 km away), AHS said.

“This is simply a unsafe situation,” Notley said.

“The closures are happening due to the fact that radical are leaving.”

She slammed the UCP’s program to chopped Alberta nurses’ salaries, particularly successful the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic, calling it “disrespectful, demoralizing and damaging.”

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The absorption person said the premier and wellness curate request to support hospitals unfastened and “abandon these plans to chopped the wages of the Albertans who enactment successful them.”

Notley said successful different regions, bonuses are being utilized to promote health-care workers to enactment connected and support working. In Alberta, however, they’re looking astatine semipermanent wage rollbacks, she said.

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“These folks who enactment successful wellness attraction person gone done career-level precocious marks for accent and anxiousness and emergency,” Notley added.

“Having gone done that, it’s shocking that their reward is to beryllium told they’ll gain little afterward.”

Health Minister Tyler Shandro said the NDP continues to politicize issues, “lie astir our effect to the pandemic” and “what’s happening successful the province.”

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“That’s their way record,” helium said astatine a quality league Monday.

Shandro said AHS has done large enactment dealing with the pressures exacerbated by the pandemic.

“AHS has done an astonishing occupation successful being capable to marque definite resources are deployed, to marque definite radical are getting the captious attraction they need, surgeries are happening. … They’ve done an astonishing occupation acting dynamically arsenic the concern changes crossed the province,” the wellness curate said.

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While staffing challenges were expected, Alberta has worked hard to enlistee health-care workers to the province, Shandro said.

“We person 1,000 much nurses than we had a twelvemonth ago, truthful we are recruiting more.”

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“We person nett — period implicit month, 4th implicit quarter, twelvemonth implicit twelvemonth — much positions, much nurses due to the fact that we proceed to amusement not conscionable the remainder of the state but the remainder of the satellite that Alberta is an astonishing spot not conscionable to travel to enactment and service residents successful your assemblage but besides a large spot to rise your children.”

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