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Nurses at Collingwood hospital fed up over safety concerns, understaffing: ONA


Registered nurses (RNs) at Collingwood General and Marine Hospital (CGMH) are fed up and have launched a committee to investigate safety concerns and staffing levels in the emergency department.

The Ontario Nurses' Association (ONA) says the RNs have repeatedly raised their concerns in writing about the negative impact of RN understaffing on patient care over the past two years "with no adequate employer solutions or actions."

A statement to CTV News on behalf of CGMH president and CEO Mike Lacroix noted the two parties had met regularly since February 2022 to discuss the concerns raised by ONA members.

However, ONA interim provincial president Bernie Robinson, RN, alleged the hospital failed to address the nurses' concerns, adding patient health and the ability of RNs to meet professional standards are at stake.

"Nursing is a highly regulated profession; RNs must be able to meet the standards set by their regulatory college. Anything less risks an RNs' license to practice," Robinson said.

The hospital statement added that all Ontario hospitals face health human resource challenges, "and we are continuously recruiting nurses and other staff to fill vacancies."

It continued, "CGMH aims to be a collaborative partner through this process, as it values its employees and patients and takes all health and safety concerns very seriously. We look forward to the outcome of this process."

The Independent Assessment Committee (IAC) is a panel of three independent nursing experts who will analyze and assess the evidence and make recommendations.

The IAC is the "most serious step" the ONA can take and is done as a last resort when employers consistently fail to address nursing staff concerns.

The hearing, which began Tuesday, runs until Friday. Top Stories

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