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live Move more on the Shore Page 13 Sunday, January 13, 2013 44 pages your source for local sports, news, weather and entertainment! travel sport moment BCAA Pa Golden rk Page Ro35yal now open Sundays! 11 a.m. - 5 p.m. Seaside train ride Page 29 HOME ! CAR ! TRA Voted Canada’s Best VNewspaper EL IN Community SURANCE Nurses protest hospital staff levels Union says shortage evident at LGH; province promises more nurses by 2016 Jeremy Shepherd A lack of staffing resulting in substandard care for patients in B.C. hospitals prompted dozens of nurses to take to Lions Gate Bridge Thursday afternoon. The nurses handed brochures to drivers and carried placards calling for the provincial government to make good on last year’s deal to add 2,100 nurses to B.C. hospitals by 2016. “We made a lot of significant gains in our contract in October. None of them have been implemented,” said Kath-Ann Terrett, chairwoman of the Coastal Mountain region of the B.C. Nurses Union. “We haven’t got any new hires.” Staff will be added over the next few years, according to Ryan Jabs, a communications officer with the B.C. Ministry of Health. “We just reached it (the new agreement) two or three months ago, so it’ll be implemented over time,” he said. At Lions Gate Hospital, which Terrett said was about average for the province, the nurse shortage is quickly evident. “If you look at the seventh floor at Lions Gate Hospital, they have code white, which is an aggressive patient, three to four times a day,” she said. “We have patients in patient lounges, in physio rooms.” A few decades ago, a patient getting his appendix out might have recovered in the hospital for a week. Now, he would be discharged within 24 hours, according to Terrett. Because patients tend to be discharged earlier, hospital stays are both shorter and more critical, requiring nurses to function in triage-like conditions, according to Terrett. Recording each patient’s history and condition is frequently done under duress, she said. “I have nurses going home in tears because they can’t provide excellent care. They rush through their charting instead of doing precise charting. That’s usually a time when you reflect and think about the care you’ve given. It’s what we call just cover-your-ass charting right now.’” Other grievances include a failure to replace nurses who call in sick and a lack of opportunities for young nurses. “I resent having to pay (for) overtime when . . . we have 300 nursing students who haven’t got jobs,” she said. Adding 2,100 nurses is a way to give patients adequate care, rather than excellent care, See Nurses page 5 Police blame iPod use for near-fatal Parkway accident James Weldon A 70-year-old North Vancouver man is in hospital with serious injuries after being run down by a distracted driver on Mount Seymour Parkway, according to police. The senior was on his way home from the gym at about 2:30 p.m. Thursday when a 19-year-old motorist reportedly veered on to the sidewalk from the thoroughfare’s eastbound lane and struck him. She had been distracted by an iPod at the time, said investigators. “She was adjusting something on it,” said Cpl. Richard De Jong, a spokesman for North Vancouver RCMP. “She admitted to using this device, and next thing you See Driver page 5 photo submitted NURSES Shiva Mehrzad (left) and Theresa McAusland demonstrate with dozens of others over the slow pace of hiring promised new nurses and lightening what they say is a dangerous workload. Beginner/10km/Half & Full Marathon Starting January 17th! 12-16 Week Program - $119.95 + Free Shoes ($150 Value) Find out more 975 Marine Drive North Vancouver 604.980.5633

North Shore News January 13 2013

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