FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE June 22, 2016
Statement from Ontario PC Health Critic Jeff Yurek on the recent HR issue at London Health Sciences:
“Recently, London Health Sciences Chief Nursing Executive Vanessa Burkoski was dismissed from her position, raising questions about whether the firing was due to her job performance or her involvement with the Registered Nurses Association of Ontario (RNAO).
Although specific details of this case at LHS have not been released, this event raises concerns about a culture of fear being cultivated within Ontario’s health care institutions and system. Patient-centred care must remain the highest priority. We should be promoting a culture of openness that allows for frontline staff to feel comfortable to speak out, without fear of retribution, when they believe patient or staff safety is being compromised.
RNAO’s concerns stem from the chronic underfunding of Ontario hospitals by this Liberal Government and the difficult decisions they are forced to make under such dire budgetary constraints. The government must ensure that health care professionals are not working outside of their scope of practice to reduce costs, ultimately affecting the quality of patient care.
Amidst the allegations surrounding the dismissal of Ms. Burkoski, I am calling on the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, the Ministry of Labour or an independent investigator to review this case and ensure that any appropriate action required is taken.”
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