Message from the UNA Local 115 Executive (Aug 2006)

Message from President Michelle Senkow

Hello – hope you have had a good summer – hopefully some time off to enjoy the good weather. Many units are very short staffed and many nursing vacancies – one manager told me last week that she has 15 vacancies. So sad for all of us staff and patients, that the nursing hortage crisis has reached this point. Government has been lobbied for years to increase nursing enrollment and positions. I have heard from people this summer that say they want to be nurses, have applied and not accepted because their average is not high enough. Please continue to lobby your MLA’s to act and help the citizens of Alberta- we need more registered nurses.

The bed shortage also has created overcapacity situations and patients being placed in areas that are not designed or equipped to properly care for patients. Please protect yourself and your patients by calling for help – if your Charge nurse or PCM can’t/won’t do
anything – call the Administrator on Call at anytime, call the union and file a PRC (Professional Responsibility Committee) report form or OH & S (Occupational Health
& Safety) form stating your concerns and asking for changes. I know many of you are working excessive overtime and hours to make up the shortfalls and your atients appreciate the professional care you give but please remember to take care of yourself- take vacation, take your days off and take a BREAK. If you are unable to get time off call our office for assistance.

Thanks to all the people who responded about the family article in the RN magazine – as you can see nursing is my passion. Milestones with my family this summer was to go through the 5th High School Grad and my daughter’s wonderful wedding – Thank you to the weather for cooperating and to all that assisted while I was on vacation.

As school starts and fall will be upon us – enjoy and hope your children have a safe return  to the school year.

Take care,

Michelle M. SenkowRN, BScN
President, Local 115
United Nurses of Alberta

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