Because of the ongoing pandemic, the number of people working in healthcare centres all across Canada has been dwindling for quite some time. Several healthcare centres in Nunavut have been closed because of a staffing shortage.
On Friday, the Nunavut government has closed two northernmost community health centres for part of the summer. The reason for these sites’ closure was a staff shortage.
Nunavut Health Minister Lorne Kusugak commented:
“The COVID-19 pandemic and a nationwide shortage of health-care staff have made the recruitment of nurses into the territory very difficult. My department developed contingency plans that will allow continuity of health services in affected communities while aggressively pursuing recruitment efforts throughout the summer.”
The territory signed a contract with Bayshore Healthcare Agency, hoping that it will help them signing more healthcare centres’ staff in Nunavut.
Although the new partnership and hiring efforts have allowed the Department of Health to avoid further summer closures, the territory spokesperson said that some closures may be necessary after all.
Also, Nunavut stated that, in the coming weeks, calls for health services may be automatically forwarded to other communities. If something like this happens, the callers are advised to not hang up if there are delays while the call is connecting.
Also, vaccines will be still available by appointment and will be administered by paramedics or a licensed nurse practitioner.