A year ago, thousands of healthcare professionals across all Quebec regions pulled up their sleeves and mobilized to contend with the biggest health crisis in our history. Faced with an unprecedented virus, they risked their lives and those of their family to continuously provide care, support the sick and their loved ones and be there for their colleagues. The Fédération interprofessionnelle de la santé du Québec – FIQ and FIQP | Secteur privé would like to applaud the extraordinary courage and humanity they have shown, despite the very dark moments they witnessed.
The last year was extremely difficult, especially for healthcare professionals who saw the worst and felt powerless before the unknown, dealing with the staff shortage, the lack of protective equipment, distress, stress, guilt, fear of falling ill and infecting their family, the virus and the death of their patients in great solitude. Unfortunately, some died in the fight.
“I would like to salute their professionalism and exemplary solidarity. Healthcare professionals sacrificed their health, safety and family lives to provide care and essential services, despite the inhumane working conditions. There can be no true recognition of their incalculable contribution without a strong commitment to change the culture and provide more support, listen more and show a greater appreciation for their role. These are the only guarantees that the sacrifices made were not in vain.”
Nancy Bédard, President of the Fédération interprofessionnelle de la santé du Québec– FIQ.
The pandemic revealed the extent to which the health network was weakened in the last years and that everything could have collapsed without the contribution of healthcare professionals; it will permanently mark the lives of the people of Quebec. The Federations underline that Quebec has a duty to remember the victims and all healthcare professionals and that this duty be embodied through concrete gestures, to promote protection for the most vulnerable people and decent practice conditions.
“Healthcare professionals gave everything so that the rest of the Quebec population could protect itself against the virus and so that the economy could keep going. Poorly protected, thousands of them contracted the virus. Many still live with serious consequences. We cannot go back in time to correct mistakes, but we have the obligation to make sure they never happen again.”
Sonia Mancier, President of the Fédération interprofessionnelle de la santé du Québec | Secteur privé
On this day of national commemoration for the victims of COVID-19, the Federations extend their most sincere condolences to the families of the healthcare workers who died. Their thoughts are also with the families and loved ones of the 10,500 victims of COVID-19 who died in the last year.