Proposed staff changes for nurses will not affect Comox hospital

The Vancouver Island Health Authority's proposed nurse staffing changes on the Island will not affect staffing at St. Joseph's.

The Vancouver Island Health Authority’s proposed changes around nurse staffing on the Island will not affect staffing at St. Joseph’s General Hospital.

Jo Taylor, BC Nurses’ Union’s regional representative for the Central and North Island, said St. Joseph’s won’t be affected by VIHA’s proposed changes because it’s an affiliate hospital.

Late last week, the BCNU demanded “an immediate halt to a (VIHA) plan to cut nurses at Nanaimo Regional General Hospital,” in a news release, stating the changes would put patient safety at risk.

The BCNU added VIHA’s plan would cut 26 registered nurses and licensed practical nurses from teams providing bedside care on medical, surgical, transition and rehab units at NRGH and replace them with 31 unlicensed care-aides.

VIHA spokesperson Val Wilson says VIHA plans to implement a new patient care model at NRGH but the plan is to reorganize staffing, not reduce nurses in the hospital.

“Some nurses on the seven units at NRGH where the new patient-care model will be implemented may be working in other areas at NRGH but there will be no layoffs,” she said, adding the new patient-care model will be implemented at Royal Jubilee Hospital and Victoria General Hospital this year, and VIHA will look at other Island hospitals after implementation at the first three hospitals.


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