Pressure Mounts to Address Kamloops Hospital Emergency Room Staffing Crisis | The Canadian News

Pressure mounts on the provincial government to address a staffing crisis at the Royal Inland Hospital emergency department in Kamloops, BC

BC Liberals MLAs representing city residents held a press conference Monday morning calling on Prime Minister John Horgan and NDP Health Minister Adrian Dix to “take responsibility” for failing in the City of Thompson Valley and outline a plan with clear implementation dates to address. the problem.

“First of all, we want to heartily thank all Royal Inland Hospital healthcare providers for their hard work, dedication and professionalism, especially in these impossible circumstances,” said Todd Stone of Kamloops-South Thompson MLA.

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“The government has let the situation in the hospital emergency department turn dire; we’ve heard reports that some shifts have just three nurses trying to keep up with a workload typically handled by 13 people. This is not fair to our healthcare providers, who are being pushed to the point of burnout and exhaustion, and it is not fair to patients who now face unacceptably long wait times for care. “

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Stone said a 70-year-old woman tragically died in an emergency department waiting room while seeking treatment last week, and recent reports suggest that about 25 percent of ER nurses have left in recent months and 20 more have. switched to casual work due to exhaustion and stress.

“The government has tried to blame COVID-19 and wildfires for the crisis at RIH, in an attempt to divert attention from the fact that they have failed to adequately resourced the hospital during their four years in power, culminating in the current crisis, ”he said. Kamloops-North Thompson MLA Peter Milobar.

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“The government’s silent announcement last Saturday of two additional emergency department nurses and vague references to temporary supports is too little, too late. It’s putting a band-aid on an open wound, ”Stone added.

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Kamloops Radio NL radio station interviewed Amanda Young on September 8, who said her mother was taken to the Kamloops emergency room the night before complaining of stomach pains and died while waiting for care around 2 a.m.

Royal Inland Hospital has been suffering from an acute shortage of nurses, especially in the emergency room, where about two-thirds of its staff have resigned or transferred, due to exhaustion aggravated by the COVID-19 pandemic, the radio station reported.

On September 11, Interior Health (IH) issued a statement saying it is trying to address the staff shortage at RIH.

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The regional health authority said that two new permanent nurses were hired for the emergency department and that temporary nurses are being brought in to support the permanent staff.

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IH says four are scheduled to start this week, with more to be brought in as needed.

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“Whenever possible, we are reassigning and reassigning clinical staff who can provide immediate support and relief to emergency department shifts at RIH and other areas of the site that need additional support,” states IH.

“IH is establishing a central recruitment team dedicated to RIH that will streamline the hiring process and shorten the time required to fill a vacant position. We are committed to filling all vacant positions as soon as possible. “

Since June 5, nine new registered nurses have joined the emergency department, the health authority said, and $ 1 million was invested to add staff to the RIH emergency room this year.

IH says significant summer wildfire activity and growing numbers of COVID-19 cases in the region are contributing factors to staffing challenges at RIH, along with large numbers of people accessing department services. emergencies at times.

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Global News has reached out to the Ministry of Health for comment.

-With files from Radio NL and CFJC Today

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