REGINA - Today, Official Opposition Health Critic Vicki Mowat responded to the newest iteration of the Sask. Party government’s healthcare staffing plan which fails to address the widening gaps in our healthcare system.
“The plan announced today is something the government should have been doing for years. Instead, they sat on their hands and made excuses while Saskatchewan’s hospitals were being run into the ground,” said Mowat. “While it’s good to see action on our call for full-time positions and training seats, nearly half of what was announced today are repackaged old policies.”
Of the 26 measures announced today, only 14 are new initiatives. Moreover, the plan to hire 1,000 new healthcare professionals over two years only meets two-thirds of the current job postings on the SHA website. Meanwhile, provinces like Ontario and British Columbia developed and began implementing aggressive recruitment and retention strategies months ago.
“Pledging to hire a thousand health care workers two years down the road when the SHA has fifteen hundred job postings today - and likely many more vacancies - simply won’t cut it,” said Mowat.
“Healthcare workers are leaving for other provinces like British Columbia, Alberta and Ontario despite the higher cost of living. When it comes to retention, this plan is vague on details and fails to provide concrete strategies to keep healthcare workers in Saskatchewan. Retention should have been priority number one.”