LONGUEUIL, QUE. -- The Monteregie East on Montreal's South Shore holds the prize for the worst healthcare professional to patient ratios, according to the Interprofessional Health Federation of Quebec (FIQ), which unveiled its list of CHSLDs in the province on Wednesday.

To illustrate the situation, members of the FIQ went early in the morning to the grounds of the Rene-Levesque Nursing Home in Longueuil to install 125 cardboard cutouts representing CHSLD (long-term care home) patients. Subsequently, a healthcare professional simulated her round of care by highlighting the overload of work that such a number of patients represents for her.

According to the FIQ, the ratios are not safe in CHSLDs in many regions of Quebec.

Devant la résistance du gouvernement de François Legault à mettre en place des ratios sécuritaires professionnelles en...

Posted by FIQ - Santé on Wednesday, 21 October 2020

The union offered three establishments as an example:

  • the Centre d'Hébergement Saint Maurice, in Mauricie / Centre-du-Québec, with a ratio of 180 patients for a nursing assistant and two nurses (night);
  • the Rene-Levesque Nursing Home in Monteregie-Est with a ratio of 224 patients for two nursing assistants and one night nurse;
  • and Manoir-Trinite in Monterégie-Est with a ratio of 119 patients for a nursing assistant (night).

"(Nurses) have an inhuman workload, and their professional responsibilities are enormous," said FIQ president Nancy Bédard in a statement. "They are faced with making choices by prioritizing some care over others. This goes against their professional ethics and makes them carry too much weight on their shoulders."

She added that the tragically high loss of life at long-term care homes witnessed in the spring due to COVID-19 must never happen again.

"The government must speed up discussions to reduce the work overload, which will ensure the quality and safety of care for the population," she said.

-- this report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 21, 2020.