The top of the New Brunswick Nurses Union says morale is low and plenty of nurses are on the verge of burnout as a result of staffing shortages being exacerbated by the pandemic.
“It is just going to take one main outbreak, one main accident and it’s crumbling down round us,” mentioned union president Paula Doucet.
Doucet is looking on the federal government to a minimum of think about slicing again on non-essential well being providers as a way of managing the continuing nursing staffing shortages.
Doucet says nurses are being compelled to work as much as 36-hour shifts with no backup employees to switch them and the pandemic is simply making issues worse.
“We’re human beings and we can’t proceed on the tempo that’s anticipated of us proper now,” she mentioned.
She mentioned the province ought to think about cancelling elective providers and surgical procedures within the brief time period.
“We might have to have a look at offering emergency providers solely. Proper now it’s enterprise as regular,” mentioned Doucet.
Doucet additionally mentioned the province might additionally think about combining some providers being provided by the Horizon Well being Community and the Vitalite Well being Community, a minimum of within the brief time period till pandemic pressures are lessened.
“That’s one thing that must be mentioned with RHAs (regional well being authorities), authorities and different stakeholders,” she mentioned, “as a result of we’re in extraordinarily dire straits now,” mentioned Doucet.
The top of the New Brunswick Medical Society says slicing again some non-essential providers will alleviate some staffing pressures.
“You must take a look at the system and say is there something that we do proper now that maybe we don’t must do and it’s exhausting to select as a result of each space appears to be vital,” mentioned Dr. Jeff Steeves.
Steeves says he has needed to cancel surgical procedures as a result of nursing scarcity for years however mentioned the pandemic is creating much more staffing pressures.
“When folks have been uncovered and need to isolate that provides insult to harm,” mentioned Steeves.
In keeping with a press release launched on Friday by the president and CEO of the Vitalité Well being Community, the employees scarcity, particularly in nursing, stays extraordinarily regarding.
“We’re implementing short-term measures to make sure the continuity of care to sufferers,” mentioned Dr. France Desrosiers. “The anticipated arrival of quite a lot of new registered nurses in July ought to present some respite, however till then, now we have to rely on the cooperation of all stakeholders to get by these tough instances.”
Right here’s what N.B. well being staff say earlier than health-care plan consultations start
However Doucet says recruitment will not be occurring quick sufficient in an overloaded system.
In a press release, the Division of Well being’s director of communications acknowledged concern over nursing shortages and mentioned the province could think about cancelling elective surgical procedures if vital.
“In relation to elective surgical procedures, cancellations have occurred up to now as a result of low staffing numbers and will happen once more relying on the identical scenario shifting ahead,” Bruce Macfarlane mentioned. “Our dedication stays with the well being and security of residents of NB, and we’ll by no means pre-emptively cancel surgical procedures except completely vital.
“Now we have taken vital steps in addressing this subject and we’re making progress. Whereas this important subject can’t be mounted in a single day, we stay dedicated to this activity and to exhausting all choices to enhance healthcare in New Brunswick.”
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