Infected healthcare employees may continue working amid “critical” staffing shortages
Some “essential” workers who come down with Covid-19 in Quebec, Canada will be permitted to remain on the job, the province’s health minister said, citing an “urgent” need for nurses and healthcare staff amid a surge in cases.
Quebec’s top health official, Christian Dube, told reporters on Tuesday that the government’s hand was forced in the decision to allow some infected employees to continue working under certain conditions, “according to a list of priority and risk management.”
“If we have the choice, we wouldn’t do it, but our situation is urgent and critical in the short term,”Dube, “This is the best alternative to not providing care.”
We have more and better-trained nurses, but the reality is that there are fewer of them. We must do this if our society is to survive.” He added.
The Health Ministry has also created an explanation by Horacio Arruda, public health director. “order of priority”To help employers decide which employees to keep working and which ones to go home. A health staffer with no symptoms, or an individual whose family has tested positive but who hasn’t received their own result, could be stationed in an area with Covid-positive patients, Arruda said, citing an example.
“If someone’s not in good shape, we won’t send them to work,”He added.
Canada’s second most populous province, Quebec has seen a new wave of infections with the rise of the Omicron strain, the latest ‘variant of concern’ designated by the World Health Organization. The region has set new records in recent days, counting nearly 13,000 new cases on Monday alone – the highest single-day tally for any province in Canada, according to Reuters.
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Dube stated that the spike in case numbers has put pressure on local hospitals. He also said that they are working to improve their services. “Omicron’s contagion is so exponential, that a huge number of personnel have to be withdrawn – and that poses a risk to the network capacity to treat Quebecers.”
Additional to the permissive guidelines, “essential”Employees, the minister of health also stated that Quebec would offer an additional dose of coronavirus vaccination to all 18-year-olds starting January 4.
Although provincial officials had previously considered requiring health workers to be vaccinated, similar policies were implemented across Canada, they decided not to do so due staff shortages. Ontario is the only province not to have followed that path, despite labor shortages.
Quebec also took more drastic measures in an effort to curb the spread Omicron. It closed gyms, bars and casinos last week. The gathering size was limited to six.
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