"The Premier could fly to China and back in the time it takes some seniors to get from emergency to an in-patient bed." — Jason MacLean, NSGEU President
Halifax (12Feb. 2018) — "It's time for Stephen McNeil to put away his passport, stay in the province, look at the facts, and admit there is a crisis in health care so his government can start working on solutions," says Jason MacLean, President of the Nova Scotia Government and General Employees Union (NSGEU/NUPGE).
Stop denying there's a health care crisis, says NSGEU/NUPGE
"Members are telling us that right now at the Halifax Infirmary patients are waiting up to an hour and a half just to be triaged, seniors are waiting up to 100 hours to get the care they need, and last night we confirmed that the hospital expanded the post anesthesia care unit and opened a temporary MASH unit to help take pressure off the emergency room," says MacLean.
"And this is only at the Halifax Infirmary. Does anyone believe that this isn't happening at other hospitals across the province? Stephen McNeil has to stop denying there is a crisis in health care and start being part of solutions," says MacLean.
Worst conditions in 20 years
NSGEU/NUPGE members work on the frontline in health care delivery, and they tell the union that this is the worst they have seen it in over 2 decades. The in-patient floors are placing people in family waiting rooms and giving them cell phone numbers to call for nurses when they need them.
"People are in hospital hallways all across Nova Scotia, families can't find a family doctor, and our health care system is over capacity and understaffed. If this isn't a crisis, I don't know what is," says MacLean. "It's fine for the Premier to stand up in front of the chamber of commerce and pat himself on the back about a balanced budget, but if people are suffering in the hallways of our hospitals, what good is a balanced budget?"
Without the government recognizing the problem, there's only so much that can be done
Since the release of the NSGEU Code Critical report the Nova Scotia Health Authority (NSHA) and the NSGEU/NUPGE have worked collaboratively to address some of the 15 recommendations and are close to releasing the follow-up report, Code Crisis.
"Nurses and health care workers are doing everything they can. The problem is we have a Premier who won't admit there is a crisis. He's denying the crisis even exists. While people wait for up to 90 minutes just to be assessed by a health care worker and some wait more than 100 hours in emergency waiting for a bed, the Premier is no-where to be found, he's traveling the world and cancelling cabinet meetings, people need help today," says MacLean.
"The Premier could fly to China and back in the time it takes some seniors to get from emergency to an in-patient bed. Is the Premier really this out of touch with the struggles of Nova Scotians or does he just not care?"
Spellitout.ca is a new social media campaign where people can send McNeil and the Liberals a message to stop denying the crisis and be part of solutions.
The National Union of Public and General Employees (NUPGE) is one of Canada's largest labour organizations with over 390,000 members. Our mission is to improve the lives of working families and to build a stronger Canada by ensuring our common wealth is used for the common good. — NUPGE