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28 jobs to go at Élisabeth Bruyère hospital (& the workers are to blame)

Job cuts at the  Élisabeth Bruyère hospital in Ottawa are now set at 28.  That's up from three weeks ago when  the word was that twenty caregiver jobs in rehabilitation and palliative would get the boot. 

The Citizen reports that orderlies working in the rehabilitation and palliative-care departments will be among the hardest hit with six other support staff and two managers also affected.

Like other health care bosses, the Bruyère boss blamed the (modest) wage increases won by unionized  hospital employees (while admitting that the hospital was increasing the salaries of non-union staff: “We have to do the same thing if we don’t want to lose people.”).   

One might have thought he might have focused on the funding crisis.  Bruyère is expecting a 0.2-per-cent funding increase and the hospital has identified $2.6 million in cuts on the hospital's $130 million budget. Another $500,000 in cuts still has to be found. 

That 0.2% increase falls rather short of the 6%-7% cost pressures on hospitals recently forecast by the Auditor General. (And that's cost pressures mostly driven by factors like aging, population growth, and utilization  -- i.e. factors completely unconnected to any wage increases for unionized workers).

But no, too many hospital bosses would rather blame the workers than cast aspersions on their government betters (who now have given themselves a say over hospital boss salaries). 

To his credit, this Hospital CEO at least told the Citizen the picture for 2013-14 looks grim if the government continues to freeze hospital funding. “If we still get around zero (per cent) next year, it’s going to be a very difficult year. I can’t see that we would go another year like this without closing beds.”


  1. Disgusting. The last CEO was terminated with a huge severance package because his sexual harassment of staff had become a problem.

    How many hundreds of thousands of dollars this that cost the hospital?


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