Yesterday, healthcare professionals from the Fédération interprofessionnelle de la santé du Québec and the FIQ | Secteur privé–FIQP went before the Superior Court in an effort to overturn the public health director’s order about wearing protective respiratory and eye equipment, issued on June 8, 2020. The order limits the use of N95 masks, which reduces protective respiratory measures for care staff instead of increasing it.
The FIQ and FIQP will not compromise on safety
The FIQ and FIQP are very committed to protecting the health and safety of their members, which is why they decided to go to court about this order and request that it be overturned. “Since the beginning of the pandemic, we have had to fight to have access to the protective equipment healthcare professionals need. The virus is still largely unknown and airborne transmission is probable: therefore, it is essential that we use the precautionary principle and protect staff, especially in light of the 2nd wave,” said Linda Lapointe, FIQ Vice-President.
“Public health authorities sustained confusion by changing its recommendations based on equipment stocks and not necessarily by taking scientific literature into account. This order is not founded on best prevention practices and should be overturned because it infringes upon the integrity, health and safety of nurses, licensed practical nurses, respiratory therapists and clinical perfusionists! Why would you compromise their safety and the population’s safety like this?” concluded Ms. Lapointe.
An order that violates healthcare professionals’ rights
A quarter of COVID-19 cases in Quebec affect healthcare workers: FIQ and FIQP members have been and continue to be exposed to a higher risk of contracting COVID-19, with all of the potential harmful consequences that involves. The FIQ and FIQP firmly believe that the public health director has overstepped his authority by issuing this order and that it violates workers’ rights.