News Stories of Interest, Thursday, June 5, 2014

Good morning. It’s Constitution Day and Father’s Day in Denmark. It’s Liberation Day in the Seychelles and President’s Day in Equatorial Guinea. It’s Indian Arrival Day in Suriname. It’s World Environment Day, established by the United Nations in 1972. Here in Alberta, there were several news stories of interest to UNA members and staff:

[ ]Employers, public unions and pension boards pan government’s planned ‘reforms’

Union leaders, board directors and public sector employers put in their two cents about pension reform yesterday in the second day of consultations hosted by the Standing Committee on Alberta’s Economic Future. Bills 9 and 10 have been an issue of contention between the government and public sector workers, who are worried proposed changes to their pensions could damage the plans they have been paying into. Heather Smith, president of the United Nurses of Alberta, characterized Bill 9 as an attack on the public sector and said misleading information has provided justification for the reforms. “This appears to have been done for entirely political reasons.”

[ ]Seniors who died in nursing home received appropriate care: review

Two residents of a Calgary nursing home who died last year after developing severe infections received appropriate care, according to a review commissioned by the facility’s owner. But the geriatric care specialist that Revera Inc. asked to investigate McKenzie Towne Care Centre found room for improvement in both wound treatment and monitoring of changes in patient medical condition.

[ ]Alberta backtracks on planned nursing cuts for disabled seniors

The provincial government has reversed a decision to reduce nursing support for residents at a central Alberta care home for the developmentally disabled. Alberta Health Services said last week that about 90 residents of Michener Centre in Red Deer would no longer have access to a nurse on Sundays and holidays.

[ ]Michener residents ‘pawns in political game,’ columnist says

Premier Dave Hancock, who was minister of Human Services when the Michener closure was announced, is firm that the closing must go ahead, and he doesn’t sound particularly happy with the way his PC Party’s leadership candidates are making an issue of the situation, writes Edmonton Journal columnist Paula Simons.

[ ] Ban on pharmacies’ reward programs delayed

A court ruling has delayed a ban on collecting loyalty rewards at pharmacies in Alberta until early next year. On Wednesday, the Court of Queen’s Bench granted a stay on the prohibition of “inducements” — loyalty rewards, points and incentives — on pharmacy products. The ban, put forward by the Alberta College of Pharmacists earlier this year, had been slated to go into effect June 10, but Sobeys applied for a judicial review.

[ ]Rate of strokes among younger people on the rise

The number of younger people suffering strokes across Canada is rising at an alarming rate and is expected to increase more in the coming decade, posing a significant challenge to the health-care system, reveals a new report by the Heart and Stroke Foundation.

[ ]Mercury forms ‘bulls eye’ around oil sands: study

An Environment Canada study has found elevated levels of mercury in northern Alberta with the bull’s-eye centred on oil sands developments.

David Climenhaga
Communications Advisor
United Nurses of Alberta
780-425-1025 (Office)
780-717-2943 (Cellular)

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