Crisis in nursing: Module throws the ballast

News 7 February, 2018
  • Photo Simon Clark
    The minister of Health, Gaétan Barrette

    Patrick Bellerose

    Tuesday, 6 February 2018 13:47

    Tuesday, 6 February 2018 19:57

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    Confronted with a crisis of burnout among the nurses, and then one of them comes to be suspended for refusing the mandatory overtime, Gaétan Barrette says it is now ready to review the ratios and make the hires.

    • READ ALSO: Crisis in nursing: the PQ asks for an emergency fund

    The minister of Health met on Tuesday evening, the Federation interprofessionnelle de la santé du Québec (FIQ), in order to calm the people’s anger, which shakes the nursing community since the young Émilie Ricard shared his plight on Facebook last week.

    “It has taken commitment to ensure that we review the ratios care professionals / patients in the regions, and that this is really the ratios that correspond to the needs of patients”, assured the president of the FIQ, Nancy Bédard, at the end of the meeting in the premises of the ministry of Health.


    “We can say that the ball is in the camp of the government”, said the president of the FIQ, Nancy Bédard.

    Without being too specific, the minister Barrette has, for its part, promised to put forward in the course of the next two weeks. “We have identified the elements on which it is essential that they see a progression,” he commented a few minutes later.

    Rather, in the day, the minister had said to wish to “improve” the financial ratios, in particular by means of the hires.


    However, a committee bringing together the government and the FIQ studying for the past two years the creation of pilot projects to reduce the ratios of patients per nurse, but the discussions are stagnant, according to the FIQ.

    The minister is now promising to require results quickly. “I was convinced that the approaches were sufficiently advanced,” he says.

    New speech

    The opening demonstrated on Tuesday by the minister Barrette contrast with the government’s response when the first stories about the exhaustion of the nurses made the headlines last week.

    Gaétan Barrette, and the prime minister Philippe Couillard had then denounced the speech of the FIQ, which was damaging to the attractiveness of the profession.

    Nurse suspended

    At the same time the minister met the FIQ Tuesday, a nurse at the Hôtel-Dieu in Sorel, Johanne Leclerc, revealed to have been suspended for refusing the mandatory overtime (OSI), a penalty never before seen, according to his union.

    According to the local president of the FIQ, Montérégie-East, Jean-Michel Varin, a second nursing assistant Sorel-Tracy could also receive a penalty on Wednesday for refusing an OSI.

    Informed of the situation, the minister Barrette has promised as he took the folder in hand. “There are phones that are going to get, it is me who is going to do,” he started.

    – With the collaboration of Hugo Duchaine