On February 2, the OPSEU Hospital Support Executive made a submission to the Standing Committee on Finance and Economic Affairs on behalf of all members who work in the hospital support sector. Hospital support workers are the backbone of hospitals and should be considered as key partners in delivering 21st century medicine. In our brief, we told the committee that chronic underfunding of hospitals is hurting acute care services.
The submission recommends that the government:
- Stop the cuts to public hospital services. The new provincial funding formula has created havoc in hospitals, especially in rural areas.
- Continue to increase the number of RPNs in hospitals. The government has recognized the significant role that RPNs can play in health care delivery but still lags behind other provinces.
- Stop the expansion of private clinics (IHFs) and uphold the Canada Health Act’s prohibition on extra-billing and user fees. The lack of adequate oversight of these clinics continues to pose a risk to public health.
- Prevent the contracting out of all hospital support worker positions.
- Create the necessary regulations facilitating implementation of the government’s Local Food Act (Bill 36). Few hospitals provide fresh local food. The government needs to make this a requirement, not an option.
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