Ontario Independent

Tuesday, November 28, 2023

As health-care pressures increase, a Toronto hospital is facing ‘limited’ staffing

As health-care pressures mount, Toronto hospitals are facing 'tight' staffing.

Key Takeaways:

  • Several factors, including the high patient volume and staff illness, contribute to the “very tight situation” for staffing at a Toronto hospital.
  • Due to the high volume of patients, TeamUHN responded to requests from all medical specialties for staff shifts, ensuring that all departments were covered during the weekend.

The “extremely tight situation” for staffing at a Toronto hospital results from several circumstances, including the high patient traffic and staff illness.

According to a representative for the University Health Network, which oversees Toronto General and Toronto Western hospitals, the emergency department had to be kept open on Saturday.

The representative stated, “The ask across the company was for units to take admitted patients from our EDs as promptly as possible.”

“This happened, which relieved some of the load on the emergency departments, thanks to our inpatient team. Additionally, TeamUHN reacted to requests from all health disciplines to staff shifts due to the volume of patients, ensuring that all areas were covered during the weekend.

Also read: The TTC is changing how it advises passengers on subway lines

The Ontario Council of Hospital Unions, including SEIU Healthcare, wrote to Ontario Premier Doug Ford on Thursday, pleading for action to address the shortage of healthcare workers.

These include removing Bill 124, a provincial law implemented in 2019 and caps salary increases in contracts with the public sector at 1% annually.

The letter urged the premier to implement an “aggressive plan” to recruit thousands of licensed nurses and other healthcare professionals who are not currently working in their field back into the industry. It also urged the premier to outlaw the use of nursing agency staff, which it claims are paid twice more than hospital employees.

As health-care pressures mount, Toronto hospitals are facing 'tight' staffing.
As health-care pressures mount, Toronto hospitals are facing ‘tight’ staffing. Image from CBC News

Health care employees currently work under terribly, terribly tense conditions in hospitals, according to Michael Hurley, president of OCHU. This union is a part of the Canadian Union of Public Employees.

According to the University Health Network, more people are being seen, and many are sicker than before. It also mentioned that its emergency room was under pressure from a lack of staff, illnesses, and vacations.

These solutions are temporary, and we are concentrating on longer-term ones, such as international recruiting, training, and deployment of clinical assistance, as well as digital health solutions, to mention a few.

The Peel Memorial urgent care facility in Brampton, hospitals in Clinton and Perth, and other emergency hospitals in Ontario have recently closed their doors.

Source: Global News

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