In light of the Ordre des infirmières et infirmiers du Québec’s (OIIQ) report released today regarding the next generation of nurses, the Fédération interprofessionnelle de la santé du Québec – FIQ believes it is high time that nurses, an absolutely vital workforce for the future of the health network, be given better working and practice conditions. “The findings that the OIIQ released today contain lots of good news that should make us all quite happy. The nursing profession is still appealing, and for good reason. It’s a wonderful profession and we need a lot of new nurses to meet the demand that will continue to grow over the next few years. The government will have to take fast action. The next generation is ready—better working conditions should be too!” said FIQ President Nancy Bédard.
The Federation believes it is of the utmost importance that the government and health network employers immediately tackle problems regarding workloads, mandatory overtime, and healthcare professionals’ distress, which is at an all-time high. “The OIIQ’s findings support what the Federation has been denouncing for a long time. Only 60% of nurses work full-time, and this rate only applies to 26% of the next generation. No other work environment relies on this type of job structure. The organization of work must be reviewed—for all care teams. Better organization of work would not only improve nurses’ working and practice conditions, it would improve them for licensed practical nurses, respiratory therapists and clinical perfusionists. Furthermore, it’s high time that we enable healthcare professionals to exercise their full roles and skills,” said Ms. Bédard. The report released today depicting the nursing workforce supports a feeling that the Federation has shared over the last few years—that the workforce shortage can no longer be blamed for all of the network’s problems. “The shortage is in large part “fake,” and neither the government nor the employers can hide behind it to explain away all of the network’s problems. The problems we see today are largely due to poor decisions made over the last few years, which are still affecting the network today,” concluded the president.