Award should go to all staff at Comox hospital

Dear editor,

The Health Employers Association (which includes VIHA), gave an award to the Transition Ward Team at St. Joseph's Hospital.

Dear editor,

The Health Employers Association (which includes VIHA), gave an award to the Transition Ward Team at St. Joseph’s Hospital.

Forget the award and give these folks a bonus for the incredible work they do. But don’t forget the cost paid by the rest of the hospital for the development of the transition ward.

Too few beds and too few staff make working conditions extremely difficult. Give these folks an award and a bonus too or better yet open up the desperately needed long-term care beds.

Eight thousand people in the Valley signed a petition objecting to the closure of 24 beds, the firing of over 30 nurses and the creation of the transition ward.

This move (according to VIHA), was designed to cover the $1-million shortfall the hospital had incurred due to inadequate funding. It was all about money, not about the needs of the community.

And now, as more aging, ill seniors need beds the transition ward is invading even more acute-care beds.

The inadequate funding continues and yet we are asked to believe that the new hospital will have more beds.

Is the funding going to dramatically increase? Is there a plan to open more of the desperately needed long-term-care beds?

The award should read “for performance above and beyond the call of duty under extremely difficult circumstances” and it should be given to all hospital staff.

Ann Zanbilowicz,

Comox Valley

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