Tag: staff

Sask. hospital staff call out overcrowding, unsafe conditions in the emergency department

Nursing staff at St. Paul’s Hospital in Saskatoon are calling on Saskatchewan Health Authority (SHA) to act on unsafe conditions in the emergency department.

CTV News obtained a letter to SHA leaders signed by 118 emergency department staff at St. Paul’s addresses overcrowding, unsafe ratios of nurses to patients and the indignity experienced by patients treated in hallways because of the lack of space.

Overcrowding leads to poorer patient outcomes, longer hospital stays and higher mortality rates, the letter says, and physicians have nowhere to properly assess people.

“We have great concerns that someday soon something bad will happen in our waiting room despite our best efforts to work in this broken system.”

With nowhere to treat new patients coming in, staff had to place people in hallway beds, “which are literally just stretchers in front of nursing desks and lined down hallways, with no safety equipment for the patients, call bells or oxygen.”

On Wednesday, the Saskatoon Fire Department said hallway beds were obstructing exit doors in the hospital, in violation of national fire code requirements.

“These deplorable conditions are leading to breaches in confidentiality, lack of dignity, and unsafe care provision due to no space with appropriate monitoring for care required,” the letter says.

“Staff report tremendous moral injury due to the conditions patients are placed in. Pad changes in the hallways while staff try hold sheets around the bed, examinations in the waiting rooms, chest pain patients with no heart monitor to observe their heart, cancer diagnoses given without privacy in the waiting room, sexual assaults with no bed to examine them or provide privacy,” staff wrote.

In an emailed statement, an SHA spokesperson told CTV News that a plan to deal with capacity pressure in Saskatoon’s hospitals

Nunavut government offers more money in bid to bolster health staff

Incentives to recruit and retain health-care workers comes as part of memorandum of understanding with Nunavut union

The Nunavut government and Nunavut Employees Union hope a new incentive package will help recruit health-care workers and keep them in the territory.

They announced a memorandum of understanding Friday that includes bonuses for recruitment and retention, hourly wage premiums for difficult to recruit positions and short-staffing situations, and loan forgiveness for Nunavut health-care workers who studied and work in the territory.

Some current health-care employees will receive increased pay as a result of the agreement, and it will be retroactive.

“I don’t know if you can tell but I’m really happy today,” said Health Minister John Main.

“I tend to worry a lot when it comes to the state of health care in Nunavut and the needs of Nunavummiut, but today’s a really happy day.”

Main was at the announcement, which took place at the legislative assembly, with NEU president Jason Rochon and Premier P.J. Akeeagok.

Main said he hopes the incentives will help alleviate staffing concerns during times when health centres may face staff shortages, such as at Christmas.

He also said he hopes it will make Nunavut more competitive when it comes to recruitment and show appreciation for staff already in the territory.

“I’m just so happy for all our incredible staff,” Main said.

“We’ve looking for ways to show them they’re appreciated, that we hear them and their concerns and that we’re listening.”

Nurse retention has long been a challenge in Nunavut. Earlier this year, a former Resolute Bay nurse launched a lawsuit against the GN, alleging harassment and wrongful dismissal.

A dozen other nurses have spoken out to Nunatsiaq News over the course of this year, alleging they are overworked, not offered support, and pushed out of their

Niagara Health emergency department staff getting additional training




A wave of respiratory and viral infections led to a flood of children in Emergency Departments (EDs) across Ontario last fall. This fall, emergency medical staff at Niagara Health’s (NH) three EDs are getting extra training for the rare, but potentially life-threatening, complications that can arise from conditions including RSV, flu and COVID-19.

Niagara Health (NH) has teamed up with McMaster Children’s Hospital’s Simulation, Resuscitation and Outreach Center (SiROC) and McMaster University’s Centre for Simulation-Based Learning (CSBL) for three mock pediatric emergency and education sessions. It’s the first collaboration between all three institutions since 2018.

Although pediatric respiratory emergencies are rare, they require an immediate response from skilled staff.

“We are fortunate that we don’t have critically ill infants and children to look after often. But when we do, we want to be prepared,” says Vera Girard, Emergency Department Nurse Educator and Registered Nurse.

NH nurses and physicians are participating in three pediatric resuscitation scenarios involving a seizure, respiratory failure and pneumonia with sepsis, at each of the St. Catharines, Niagara Falls and Welland hospitals. Simulating these emergencies with high-tech mannequins from McMaster University can increase confidence levels, teamwork skills and communication. All of which, improve patient safety and outcomes.

“The simulation sessions give us a safe space to practice working together as a team, at a time when the stakes aren’t so high,” explains Girard.  “Practicing improves your performance, just like with any sports team. By practicing, we can identify supplies and equipment needs, knowledge or skill gaps, team dynamics issues and improve them so that in a real patient situation we have what we need to be at the top of our game.” 

NH hosted the first simulation at the St. Catharines hospital on Oct. 25, with another Nov. 1

Hamilton hospital network has reported 5 cases of staff ‘snooping’ to privacy watchdog this year alone

A major Hamilton hospital network has reported 11 privacy breaches, including five involving “snooping,” to the Ontario watchdog this year alone. 

The most recent case, revealed this week, resulted in Hamilton Health Sciences (HHS) firing eight employees for looking through personal health information of some 4,000 patients over 12 months. The Information and Privacy Commissioner of Ontario (IPC) said it’s investigating this case as well as “any systemic issues that may be at the root of it.”

HHS has reported another 10 privacy breach cases to the IPC in 2023, the IPC confirmed to CBC Hamilton. Four of those cases also involved employees snooping or looking at records out of curiosity. The IPC did not provide details about the other six cases. 

Of the four other snooping cases, half are still being investigated and half are completed, said HHS spokesperson Wendy Stewart. So far, two employees have been terminated and 42 patients whose records were looked at were notified. 

To prevent privacy breaches, HHS does monthly system audits, Stewart said.

As well, all staff, including doctors and students, are trained on “their responsibility to safeguard patient health information,” she said.

HHS reported an additional 23 privacy breaches in 2022. IPC said it dealt with all of them in the “early resolution stage,” which means they weren’t investigated either because they didn’t fall within IPC’s jurisdiction or the parties reached an informal settlement. 

Patient left with unanswered questions

Patient Roch Longueépée, 53, received a letter from HHS on Tuesday that informed him of the most recent privacy breach detected in April. However, it’s left him with more questions than answers — who accessed his patient records and why? 

“The letter they’ve sent me is unacceptable and I will be demanding more information,” said Longueépée, a Kitchener resident.

“My trust is compromised

Return of health care staff to Yellowknife will be phased, CEO says


The Northwest Territories Health and Social Services Authority has not yet called for all staff to return to Yellowknife but is working on a plan to resume core services in the capital.

That’s according to an email sent to staff Tuesday on behalf of Kimberly Riles, chief executive officer of the health authority, which was shared with Cabin Radio.

“Staff should not yet return to Yellowknife and should not be coming back to the community until they are directly contacted,” the email states.

“You will be contacted individually and specifically recalled when it is time as you will be required to be listed on a repatriation flight, or to be issued essential services clearance to return by road.”



NWT Fire announced on Monday afternoon the wildfire burning to the west of Yellowknife, labelled fire ZF015, was “being held.” That does not mean it is now safe to return, the wildfire agency said, but the fire is unlikely to spread beyond expected boundaries.

While an evacuation order for the city and surrounding areas remains in place, the City of Yellowknife said Monday it had begun asking staff “critical” to re-entry efforts to return.

It remains unclear when the general public may be allowed to re-enter the municipality.

The email from the health authority states it has been working with the territory’s emergency management organization, among other government departments and agencies, on return planning. It said “several planning assumptions,” such as the availability of groceries and childcare services, need to be confirmed before it can finalize timelines.



The email states some staff will be recalled sooner than others as service resumption will be phased with a focus on life-sustaining emergency services. Some staff may not be recalled until the general public is allowed to return to Yellowknife.

Union says N.S. 811 staff among lowest paid health-care workers in Canada – Halifax

Telehealth associates working for Nova Scotia’s 811 phone line are speaking out through their union about how current wages are leading to difficulties retaining and recruiting workers, as a frequent turnover rate continues to impact the 24/7 health information service.

A release titled “811 workers speak out” from the Nova Scotia Government and General Employees Union (NSGEU), which is the province’s largest union, says 811 workers are amongst the lowest-paid health-care workers in Canada.

The employees, who offer health advice, the transferring of more urgent calls to 911, and assistance in adding residents to the waitlist for a primary healthcare provider, currently make $18.44 an hour. The calculated living wage for Halifax, where the employees are based, is $23.50.

According to the province’s website, 325 patients receive care from an 811 nurse on a regular basis.

Story continues below advertisement

“We are experiencing higher than normal call volumes. It will take longer than usual to respond to your call,” a disclaimer on the service’s website read on Saturday.

Hugh Gillis, first vice president at NSGEU, said telehealth workers are currently under “extreme” pressures due to the position’s around-the-clock nature.

“It is unconscionable that these workers are making less than a living wage,” he said in the release.

There are currently only 17 telehealth associates working in Nova Scotia. They are employed by Emergency Medical Care Inc., which is contracted by the provincial government to operate the service.

“Staffing shortages have been so acute that workers have had to be mandated to work overtime, which is leading to worker fatigue and burn-out, and jeopardizing the service,” NSGEU’s release added.

Story continues below advertisement

In an interview with Global News, Gillis said he continues to hear from workers that it’s becoming increasingly challenging to live in Halifax with their current pay.

Surgery backlogs, staff shortages, no family doctor: New report highlights Canada’s health-care crisis

A new report highlights Canada’s major drop in surgeries during the early years of the pandemic, but those pains were felt unequally across the country’s patchwork provincial health-care systems — with the largest decrease in procedures seen in Newfoundland and Labrador.

The findings were released Wednesday by the Canadian Institute for Health Information (CIHI), an independent organization which compiles and analyzes health system data.

The CIHI team found roughly 743,000 fewer surgeries were performed in Canada during the first 2½ years of the pandemic — a drop of about 13 per cent compared to 2019.

“It takes a long time to catch up when you have to cancel a large number of surgeries,” said Kathleen Morris, CIHI’s vice-president of research and analysis.

Despite the drop in surgeries, overtime hours in Canada’s public hospitals from 2020 to 2021 increased by 15 per cent over the previous year — a “stark example” of the pressure COVID-19 put on health-care workers, the CIHI report noted.

The findings also shone a spotlight on other health-care issues, including staff shortages and burnout, levels of access to personal health information, and the roughly one in 10 Canadians who say they don’t have a regular health-care provider.

The report is part of a sweeping effort to change how the country handles Canadians’ health data. The federal Liberals have offered the provinces and territories billions in new spending over the next decade to address the country’s health-care crisis and, in exchange, the regions must commit to improving how health data is collected and reported.

All provinces and territories have signed on, except Quebec, which did not provide any figures for CIHI’s new report — leaving out health information for a population of roughly 8.8 million.

Surgeries decreased most in Newfoundland

On the surgery front, the new data

College of Education and Health Professions Selects Superior Staff Service Award Winners

From top left: Erica Langley, JL Jennings Jr; and Stacy Stuart; and bottom: Myra Haulmark, Shannon Magsam and Karan Baker Burnette.

Photo Submitted

From top left: Erica Langley, JL Jennings Jr; and Stacy Stuart; and bottom: Myra Haulmark, Shannon Magsam and Karan Baker Burnette.

The University of Arkansas College of Education and Health Professions recently named the 2022-23 “Superior Staff Service Award” winners.

“These awards recognize staff members who consistently go above and beyond in their service to COEHP, our students, and our community,” Dean Kate Mamiseishvili said. The staff members will be recognized alongside the college’s outstanding faculty award winners at the college’s end-of-year meeting on Friday, May 5, in Hillside Auditorium.

“Our college is fortunate to have outstanding staff members all across our units who play a critical role in helping us achieve the mission of the caring college,” Mamiseishvili said.

This year’s winners are:

Service to Students: Erica Langley

As the Eleanor Mann School of Nursing Program Success Coordinator, Erica Langley is the sole advisor for approximately 490 active nursing students in the traditional prelicensure track on campus. She serves on the departmental Student Affairs Committee and collaborates with other faculty to lead the holistic admissions process, including multiple informational orientations for pre-nursing students, professional expectations, and facility tours. Langley is present in all grievance proceedings as a student advocate and neutral party for clarification. She also supports senior-level students in preparation for career readiness plus university and state board applications. Langley also organized a first-semester orientation focused on how to be successful in the nursing program. Topics included mindfulness, health promotion, study techniques, and professionalism, which expanded into a wellness series for all prelicensure nursing students and faculty.

Service to Students: JL Jennings Jr.

JL Jennings Jr. serves as the director of field placement within the Office of Teacher Education, which assists education programs at the U of A. He led the

Unity Health’s health care imaging staff operates all around the clock. Their effect is ‘everywhere’

Throughout Unity Overall health Toronto’s three hospitals, hundreds of personnel are working all around the clock to acquire and process illustrations or photos and that are important to help diagnose ailments and finish health care procedures.

“Did you hit your head in a automobile incident? Imaging will help rule out a bleed in the mind. Just cannot wander right after falling on the ice? Imaging will decide if you had a hip fracture. Did you have a stroke? Imaging plays a purpose so that the health practitioner can see the clot in the brain and clear away it,” states Jeff Kerk, Unity Wellbeing Director of Health-related Imaging. “The effects of our imaging staff can be noticed all over the place.”

Approximately 300 personnel users make up the Medical Imaging crew, such as radiologists, diagnostic health care sonographers, health care radiation technologists, RNs, IT team, clerical workers and directors.

The workforce contains Clinical Radiation Technologist Heather Armstrong, who joined St. Michael’s Healthcare facility two several years ago. She performs with the interventional radiology group, focusing mainly in interventional processes and CT scans. She was also not long ago properly trained to work the hospital’s moveable MRI scanner – which was the first to be obtained by a Canadian medical center for scientific use.

“We inject a affected individual with distinction dye, and utilizing equipment and X-ray equipment, we acquire stay images of the dye shifting via the physique,” Armstrong claims. “Physicians will appear at these photos to ascertain if there are any issues or problems these as clots or blockages.”

Armstrong and her colleagues present interventional treatments for up to 10 sufferers a working day, supporting clinicians complete strategies ranging from inserting chemotherapy ports in most cancers patients to biopsies to coiling brain aneurysms.

Functioning with the interventional radiology staff at

Back To Top