Friday, May 15, 2009

Every nursing cut has negative impact on quality of health care.

This is from the Sault St. Marie Star.

While bankrupt companies are bailed out the social service net is cut to save taxpayer money! Bad economic times are always a good excuse to cut back on the safety net rather than expanding services. Apparently stimulus packages are great as long as they are not in areas such as nursing services.

Every nursing cut has negative impact on quality of health care

Posted 4 hours ago
Across Ontario, health-care facilities are slashing registered nursing positions and cutting thousands of hours of nursing care.
Every RN position cut is the equivalent of 1,950 hours per year less nursing care for the thousands of Ontarians who need it.
The cuts are happening as government policy forces health-care facilities to balance their budgets. Health-care funding has not kept up with costs -- costs have risen 3.5 per cent, and hospital funding was announced in this spring's budget as 2.1 per cent for 2009/10.
Health-care agencies are already "lean" -- cuts have been made for years to balance budgets, and with nowhere left to cut, administrators are turning to nurses, services and bed closures for savings.
Registered nurses are also taxpayers, and we want our tax dollars to be invested wisely, just as every other taxpayer does. But balancing these budgets on the backs of our patients and registered nurses (RNs) must stop.
Every RN position cut means another nurse will have patients added to her existing workload. While being cognizant of the suffering of many Ontarians experiencing job losses, we should all remember that there is a difference when an RN job is cut -for every patient added to a nurse's workload, our patients experience a seven-per-cent increased risk of experiencing serious complications or death.
Quality health care is too important for all of us to stand silently by and let these cuts continue.
As a result of the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care's mandate for hospitals to balance their budgets, the Sault Area Hospital is cutting 16 full-time registered nursing positions. That equates to 31,200 RN hours being removed from direct bedside care per year. If you want quality patient care, we the Registered Nurses at Sault Area Hospital need you, the public to speak out.
The Ontario Nurses' Association (ONA) has created a new website
(www.cuttingnursescuttingcare. c a) that makes it easy for you to learn more about the cuts that are risking our health. The site includes a link to send a message to your MPP to stop nursing cuts.
Every Ontarian should care deeply about health care, and about the cuts that mean patients' lives are being put in jeopardy.

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