News Stories of Interest, Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Today is the 100th anniversary of victory in the fight for women’s right to vote in Alberta, with the passage of the Equal Suffrage Statutory Law Amendment Act by the Alberta Legislature on April 19, 1916. Western Canada led the struggle for this fundamental right, which came first to Manitoba in 1915. It’s also National Health Day in Kiribati.

Massive health information overhaul coming

Patients tired of retelling medical histories, physicians frustrated with a cumbersome record system too reliant on paper, and administrators struggling to cut costs hope to benefit from a massive health information overhaul in Alberta. The government says it will invest $400 million over the next five years to begin replacing most of the 1,300 unconnected technology platforms currently in use within Alberta Health Services.

Ontario to spend $100 million US outsourcing transplants to U.S.

Ontarians with aggressive cancers and blood disorders have been dying on waiting lists because hospitals here haven’t had the space, staff or funds to meet the rising demand for life-saving stem cell transplants. Now the province’s health ministry has approved a plan that front-line doctors fear will create an even deeper health care crisis: outsourcing hundreds of allogeneic transplants to three centres in the United States at a cost of more than $100 million US.

Seven B.C. residents, two pregnant, test positive for Zika Virus

Seven B.C. residents have tested positive for the Zika virus, including two pregnant women whose fetuses are being closely monitored at the BC Women’s Hospital Reproductive Infectious Diseases Clinic.

AHS intends to continue fight against Calgary man’s legal grow-op

Alberta health Services seems determined to shut down a Calgary man’s legal grow op, according to this report by Metro Calgary. The Public Health Appeal Board overturned a previous attempt by AHS to shut the grow-op, calling the authority’s actions “extreme” and its evidence “deficient.”

AHS managers accused of taking too many sick days

Hundreds of Alberta Health Services managers are taking months of sick leave at the expense of provincial taxpayers, CTV complains in what it bills as a big expose. Documents acquired through access to information requests show hundreds of managers taking time off and collecting full pay over the last two years, the broadcaster says. AHS managers are allowed to take 16 weeks of sick time and in many cases they did exactly that, before returning to work.

Federal prison guards brace for pay glitches

Canada’s 7,500 federal prison guards “hope for the best but expect the worse” when their pay is turned over to a new automated system this week, says union officials.

So, it turn’s out it’s all health care’s fault

A Postmedia columnist blames the high cost of health care for Alberta’s financial troubles.

A note from AHS Human Resources to SARO indicates that Larry Walters, a former HR manager with the Alberta Cancer Board and AHS’s Calgary Zone, has been appointed Director of HR Business Partnerships in the Calgary Zone. No web link on this, I’m afraid.

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