Your letters for July 26, 2022: Ministers should talk to health staff

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Your letters for July 26, 2022: Ministers should talk to health staff

Front line health care providers know the issues facing rural health care better than any manager or consultant, writes Bashir Jalloh.

Angry demonstrations like the one in Kamsack could have been avoided had government ministers met and listened to health care workers, writes a local health union president.
Angry demonstrations like the one in Kamsack could have been avoided had government ministers met and listened to health care workers, writes a local health union president. Photo by Jeremy Simes /Regina Leader-Post

Merriman, Hindley should visit frontline

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As a nuclear medicine technician and the president of Saskatchewan’s largest health-care union, I was quite intrigued by the comments made by Everett Hindley, minister of mental health and addictions, seniors, and rural and remote health about working together to find solutions to our rural health-care crisis.

CUPE 5430 represents over 14,000 health care workers across Saskatchewan, including workers in some of the areas hardest hit by recruitment challenges that include laboratory, diagnostic imaging and members of the nursing team.

We have been sounding the alarm on staffing issues for years and offering concrete ways to implement solutions like: Market supplements for hard to recruit classifications and positions; creating more permanent full-time jobs postings; and stepping up training and recruitment efforts.

But our attempts to offer solutions have been ignored.

We have invited both Hindley and Health Minister Paul Merriman to attend a members’ town hall to hear directly from health-care workers. We have also brought frontline health-care workers to the legislature, but they were too busy to meet.

Frontline health care providers know the issues facing rural health care better than any manager or consultant. We need to be a part of the process moving forward.

I sincerely hope that the Saskatchewan government is ready to take meaningful action on this file. All their talk of solutions is just empty words if they are not listening to and engaging with health-care workers.

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Bashir Jalloh, Regina,

President CUPE 5430

Let’s celebrate Medicare’s 60th

Our health system is under attack! With emergency units shutting down due to under staffing, and overworked, under-appreciated existing staff, it is important that this July people in Saskatchewan recognize and celebrate the 60th anniversary of universal health care.

It is more important than ever that we keep our health care publicly funded. If we don’t “stand on guard for thee,” we could lose it by doing nothing. Our system might have problems or could be improved, but at least we have it.

Over the years, everyone would have benefitted from medicare brought in by the NDP. Pocket issue problems will be even greater if we lose this publicly funded universal health care principle.

Marcella Pedersen, Cut Knife

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