FIQ (Fédération Interprofessionnelle de la santé du Québec)

Is it true that healthcare professionals aren’t really interested in working full time?

Is it true that healthcare professionals aren’t really interested in working full time?


According to the government, YES!

During the question period on May 26, 2020, the Premier stated: “10,000 employees were absent in our CHSLDs before the pandemic. We would like to post 20,000 jobs, but the priority over the short-term is to fill the 10,000 positions that were vacant before the pandemic.”

According to the Quebec government, several positions are vacant in the health network because healthcare professionals don’t want to work full time.

While full-time positions may be difficult to fill, does that mean it’s because healthcare professionals don’t want to work full time? Can we really blame healthcare professionals for not wanting these positions?


VeriFIQation done!

The Premier doesn’t say much about the real reasons why healthcare professionals refuse these positions. If he identified the reasons, maybe he would be in a better position to propose solutions to solve the problem.

The truth is that these full-time positions are in no way appealing, especially in terms of professional and personal life balance.  All full-time positions created after the increase planned in the last collective agreement include mobility between sites or shifts. That means that an employee with a full-time position is obliged to regularly change their schedule or work location.  Let’s not forget that the majority of the care staff are women, many of whom have a lot of family responsibilities. 

In this context, is it surprising that the mother of a family would prefer a part-time position in order to be able to take care of her family responsibilities?

There’s also the added challenges of the work overload, mandatory overtime, etc. Women opt for part-time positions to balance their family responsibilities and to protect their own physical and mental health.

Furthermore, even if in theory full-time positions come with the benefits of days off, as stipulated in the collective agreement, it is increasingly difficult to take the days off because of the excessive workload.

However, the day that full-time positions make it possible to have a work/family/personal life balance, many women will surely want them because full-time positions provide increased financial security now and at retirement.