Tapion Hospital is being urged by the Saint Lucia Nurses Association (SLNA), to address the safety concerns of nurses, prompted by a new shift system
SLNA President, Alicia Baptiste, told the Times that without prior consultation, Tapion Hospital on Monday effected the change.
The change is :- 7:00am – 3:00pm, 3:00pm – 11:00pm, 11:00pm – 7:00am.
She disclosed that previously, the shifts at Tapion Hospital were from:- 6:45am – 2:00pm,1:00pm – 9:00pm and 9:00pm – 7:00am.
Baptiste told the Times:
“Our nurses are concerned and so is the association. We are concerned with regard to their safety because transportation was not promised at the time we got the information.”
The SLNA President said that the association’s concerns were prompted by the increase in rapes and violence against women.
She explained that as a result the association has decided to meet with the management of Tapion Hospital to discuss the issue, as well as terms and conditions of work for the twenty-one nurses who work there and are members of the SLNA.
“These nurses leave their homes and families to take care of the sick in our country and we owe them protection,” Baptiste asserted.
She observed that the International Council of Nurses (ICN), believes that rostering systems applied in all nurses’ work settings must adequately consider, among other things, occupational health implications, as well as patient needs, number of nurses and skills and worker safety.
According to Baptiste, the ICN promotes the new shift patterns on a trial basis for at least 6 months, so that a thorough evaluation may be undertaken with the participation of nurses.
The SLNA President noted that in its quest to ensure better working conditions and safety of its nurses, her association will seek the advice of Regional and International agencies.
They include the ICN and the Caribbean Nurses Organization (CNO).
The SLNA is urging the authorities at Tapion Hospital to rethink their decision on the shift change for nurses.