The ongoing transformations in the healthcare system following the adoption of Bill 10 mean that nurses, licensed practical nurses, respiratory therapists and perfusionists once again are drawn into a spiral of mergers and revised methods. They will have to learn to deal with a work context often different from the one that was familiar to them: new institution, maybe a new team, or even a new schedule. These upheavals will not fail to affect many and will require them to be very adaptable. It is expected that they will be dedicated and show flexibility. After all, they are habitually capable – aren’t they?
However, as in the case of any other workers, any reform changes their relationship with their work, positively or negatively. These changes involve vigilance regarding the risks that may emerge. Adapting is all very well… but this mustn’t be detrimental to the individual’s physical and mental health.
The key is to pay attention to the relationship people maintain with their work. They must analyze how the current changes are accompanied by opportunities or constraints and know how to recognize when the adaptation requested is too great and at poses a risk to their welfare. They must also identify when their capabilities are not considered sufficiently or their potential is not optimized enough.
In the context of 2015 Annual OHS Week, the FIQ OHS Committee offers FIQ members a broader vision of ergonomics to perform this analysis. How are the three branches of this discipline (physical, cognitive and organizational ergonomics) useful in becoming aware of the importance of adapting the job to the person, whenever possible, and not necessarily always oblige the person to adapt to the job? What levers make it possible to ensure that the individual can achieve her professional objectives while respecting her capabilities?
Let’s take the opportunity to send a message to healthcare professionals that the environment must finally start adapting to them and pay more attention to their needs and limits. More consideration must also be given to the constraints of the people who are shouldering the responsibility for the healthcare system when they are often on the verge of exhaustion. It must be recognized that they have limits and that sometimes each person has the right to say: “I am taking a position for my health!”
Contrary to what you may think, ergonomics is not limited to the physical! Watch for the launch of the brochure on this subject on the FIQ website in the weeks ahead to learn more.
Do you know ?
This October, the local union teams are invited to hold activities for Annual OHS Week. Watch for the activities that will be held in your institution!
There are several definitions of ergonomics, but it can be summed up as the science that studies the individual’s interactions with her work environment and with the components of the system in which she operates. Ergonomics has the objective of improving these interactions, and optimizing them to ensure both the individual’s welfare and the system’s performance.