The Fédération interprofessionnelle de la santé du Québec–FIQ is pleased to hear the announcement about the additional premiums for healthcare professionals who are on the front lines of the battle against COVID-19. The FIQ has continuously demanded better premiums and recognition for healthcare professionals’ hard work. The FIQ is pleased that the government is finally implementing an appealing measure for healthcare workers who are the most exposed during this pandemic.
Nurses, licensed practical nurses and respiratory therapists who work in CHSLDs (public, private), intermediary resources, private residences for seniors, and in hospitals with “hot zones” will immediately receive a premium when they work full-time. All the same, this announcement raises questions that the FIQ will analyze in light of the ministerial order and its application.
“Even though this is good news, the measure is still imperfect and will unfortunately not apply to everyone on the front line. What kind of incentive will be offered to those who cannot be available full-time? What conditions do healthcare professionals have to meet to obtain these premiums? We understand that the government wants to promote staff recruitment and retention in institutions that are hard hit with COVID-19 and we finally have a significant measure to do that,” said Nancy Bédard, FIQ President.
The FIQ’s ongoing demands
The FIQ has continuously made representations to obtain protection and recognition for healthcare professionals since the government decreed insufficient and inequitable premiums in a ministerial order. These efforts will have played a part in getting the government to come to grips with the facts.
Moreover, the Federation is still concerned about the safety and rest that healthcare professionals need, which cannot be compensated by monetary measures alone. The FIQ will continue to fight to quickly restore healthcare professionals’ rights, including their right to vacation time.