Struggles for health care workers remain a difficult time

All hospitals across Canada are struggling

To the Expositor:

Re: ‘MHC continues to provide patient services without struggles other hospitals are facing’ July 20, Page 39.

I want to thank The Expositor for taking the time to speak with me recently about the current staffing situation at Manitoulin Health Centre (MHC). While I know those in the media often hear complaints from people that a story was too negative, in this case it’s the opposite. I believe the story and the headline that used the phrased “without struggles” left a more positive impression than I had intended. More importantly, I feel it may misrepresent the reality that our frontline health care workers are facing and I want to apologize for leaving that impression. Please allow me to correct the record.

The fact is, as stated in the original story, larger hospitals are facing more intense challenges and larger volumes than we are at MHC—but I don’t want that comparison to diminish the pressures our healthcare professionals like nurses and doctors are facing.

The reality is there is a daily struggle to maintain adequate and safe staffing at MHC. The dedication and professionalism of our longstanding staff and new arrivals has helped, but there is still considerable and significant strain on the system. As well, the comments regarding locum coverage were unintentionally incorrect and I accept responsibility for that and regret any frustration that may have caused our doctors.

There is, indeed, strain and struggles on all those who work at MHC. The pandemic has been a difficult time for everyone. Physicians, nurses and all staff have had to deal with increasing incidents of harassment, and verbal and physical abuse. The balance of family, personal and professional life has been deeply affected.

All hospitals across Canada are struggling and MHC is no exception. I ask anyone who is visiting MHC as a patient or a family member to remember this and please be kind to those who are trying their best to help you and your loved ones.

Thank you,

Paula Fields, CEO
Manitoulin Health Centre