National health issues raised in Whitehorse

September 2016   Comments

Office of the Ontario PremierCNA president Barb Shellian (second from left) and YRNA president Christina Sim (right) met Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne (second from right) and her spouse, Jane Rounthwaite, (left) at the welcome reception.
Barb Shellian made her first official appearance as CNA president at the Council of the Federation (COF) meeting held in Whitehorse, where she met with provincial and territorial premiers.

Yukon Registered Nurses Association president Christina Sim, Shellian and staff from both associations attended various events and meetings before and during the July 21 to 22 COF meeting. Shellian shared key recommendations from CNA with many of the premiers attending the Yukon premier’s welcome reception: including an accountability framework in the new health accord to enable monitoring and reporting on the use of Canada Health Transfer dollars, taking action on investing in home care and providing more support for family caregivers.

The two presidents and staff, including YRNA executive director Mieke Leonard, had productive face-to-face meetings with officials at territorial/provincial and federal levels. Specific concerns raised by YRNA were the need for more engagement with the territory’s minister of health and social services at the Yukon Advisory Committee on Nursing, an increase in the number of NP positions and the creation of a chief nursing officer position in Yukon. YRNA highlighted the importance of having all stakeholders take part in collaborative discussions on nursing human resources issues.

At the closing press conference, the premiers issued four communiqués, including one on health-care sustainability.

CNA was pleased with the premiers’ discussions on health care. “Particularly, we are happy to hear that the premiers are currently looking at innovative care models that prioritize home- and community-based care over long-term care institutionalization,” Shellian said in a statement. “We encourage governments to continue to engage health-care professionals from across the country to move this priority forward.”

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