FIQ (Fédération Interprofessionnelle de la santé du Québec)

COVID-19: Action plan for a second wave — The FIQ expects a stabilization of work teams

The Fédération interprofessionnelle de la santé du Québec–FIQ welcomes the action plan for a second wave of COVID-19 from the Minister of Health and Social Services, Christian Dubé. While we welcome the willingness to act in advance as well as several of the government’s findings, particularly regarding the work force, infrastructure and governance problems seen during the pandemic, the action plan should be more specific on the place of the healthcare professionals.

The professionals should be at the heart of the action plan

The FIQ cannot predict the magnitude of the 2nd wave or its severity, but we know the past and the mistakes that we don’t want to see again. Those errors were due to the health and social services network’s deterioration: “Minister Christian Dubé raised the work force issues and action plan, and we welcome this finding. This will have to be proven by giving more place to the healthcare professionals and working on the network’s capacity to value and attract them. The government has a golden opportunity to refocus on health care and our members, by respecting their expertise and working conditions. For example, infection control nurses who are part of the solution and who would complete the care teams in the healthcare institutions should be utilized. Safe ratios also need to be implemented which, with the nurses, licensed practical nurses and respiratory therapists, would control the care quality and spread of infections. We are ready to collaborate with the government now on this!“ stated Nancy Bédard.

Prevention and protection of the members of the care team and population

The FIQ welcomes the ban on work force mobility to avoid the spread of infections. Remember that the financial management and human resources teams in the network were obsessed with this mobility, associated with excessive flexibility of the work force, over the last few years. The FIQ also expects that the supply of protective equipment will not be a challenge for its members and workers that could be contaminated are quarantined”. We had to fight for access to the protective equipment the professionals needed from the beginning of the pandemic. The virus is still not well-known, airborne transmission probable: therefore, it is essential to apply the principle of optimal precaution, and protect the staff.  

We hope that we don’t have to go to battle again to protect our members”, added Nancy Bédard.

Accent on the accountability of the CIUSSSs and CISSSs

If we understand the general objective of making the CIUSSS and CISSS managements responsible for making the required decisions on screening, equipment and material in order not to make the same mistakes, the FIQ expects the directives to be clear, “We do not want to go through the same situation again. There must be a change and improvement in management approaches, putting all the energy into stabilizing the work teams. The healthcare professionals expect to have decent schedules and rest periods. The FIQ will follow the application of this plan to ensure that healthcare professionals are respected and part of the decision-making process.”, added Nancy Bédard, president of the FIQ.

Crédit photo : François Legault | Facebook