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St. Anthony hospital staff were told of bed changes, says nurse's union president

["Debbie Forward, president of the Registered Nurses’ Union Newfoundland & Labrador, speaks to the media at about the nurses' contract being extended for another year. — Photo by Joe Gibbons/The Telegram"]
Debbie Forward - File photo

Union president statement comes after LGH denies changes

ST. ANTHONY, N.L. —

Debbie Forward, President of the Registered Nurses Union Newfoundland and Labrador (RNU), is backing up a social media claim that nurses have been advised of changes to hospital beds at Charles S. Curtis Memorial Hospital.
The response from Forward comes after Labrador-Grenfell Health (LGH) released a statement indicating no changes were coming.
On Feb 6, local resident Cassie Pynn Patey posted on Facebook that LGH would be converting acute care beds to long-term care beds and the obstetrics/gynecology section was going to become a general unit.
The post garnered over 150 shares and over 200 comments.
Two days later, Heather Brown, CEO of LGH in a press release, that these changes are not planned.
“There are no plans to close or convert acute care beds to long-term care beds,” she said in the release. “There is no plan for men and women to share rooms on the maternity ward. While we continually strive to create efficiencies within our system, there are no layoffs planned at the hospital.”
However, Forward told the Northern Pen that’s not what she has heard from staff at the hospital.
In an interview today, Feb. 14, Forward says the information that was shared with her by staff was consistent with the information shared on social media.
“My members reported to me they were called into a meeting by a manager and were told that there would be a change in beds,” she told The Northern Pen. “There would be less beds for med-surg (medical/surgical) and there would be some subsequent changes on obstetrics. That’s what was reported to me. And, then, when it started to trickle out, my understanding is that LGH came out with a public position that is not in keeping with that.”
Forward says the suggested changes have created a lot of concern among the union members and the RNU have brought their concerns to the human resources department of LGH.

stephen.roberts@northernpen.ca

Earlier story: Labrador-Grenfell Health CEO says acute care not being turned into long-term care at Charles S Curtis Memorial Hospital

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