Your SEIU-West President, Barb Cape, wrote a message in recognition of National Nursing Week 2017:
Licensed Practical Nurses and Continuing Care Assistants – vital to health care – essential players in the nursing team.
In our busy health care system, we see men and women in scrubs moving past us all the time. Whether it’s in our community hospital, nursing home or home care environment, the members of your public health care team want you to get the care you need when you need it.
Nursing week gives us a chance to get to know all of the players on our nursing team, how they work to benefit you and your family. We want you to know that behind those scrubs, there are different skills, knowledge and talents working to provide world-class health care to the people of Saskatchewan.
The role of the Licensed Practical Nurses (LPNs) has expanded over the last two decades as a direct result of LPN program changes in our province. The intense school-based knowledge of the LPN lends to their practical placement where those skills can be put to work and in an environment that hones a high level of professionalism. LPNs have a regulated profession and an extremely concentrated medical training over two years that sets a high standard all across Canada. They are licensed, trained professionals who continue to build their skill and knowledge to benefit their patients, clients and residents. LPNs work in operating rooms, long term care facilities, emergency rooms, home care and public health offices. They bring compassion, integrity, knowledge and teamwork to our public health care team.
Continuing Care Assistants (CCAs) have expanded the scope of their skills over the last two decades as well. Once called ‘Nurse Aides’, they have built a body of knowledge and professionalism with increasing levels of skill and experience. Their formal training provides them with foundational medical knowledge, and their engagement with patients, clients and residents gives them the hands-on lens which contributes to the larger picture of the whole health care team. Together, this team works seamlessly to care for you and your loved ones.
Within our provincial health care system, there are far too few nursing teams and front line workers of all stripes. Running to provide care is becoming a standard operating procedure. As a province, we need to recommit to investing in our health care system so that we have enough people in scrubs to keep you and your loved ones comfortable, informed, and healthy by providing the professional care you need, when you need it.
LPNs and CCAs in your community are united by one union, SEIU-West, and one colour, purple. Find out more about your public health care team by visiting www.purpleworks.ca.