Rosalie Woodruff MP | Greens Health spokesperson
The government’s proposal to limit nursing shifts to a maximum of 12 hours, except in exceptional circumstances, will do nothing to improve the amount of double-shifts being worked around the state.
Minister Ferguson hasn’t put any more money into the nursing pool, which means “exceptional circumstances” will occur on a regular basis unless the Minister is planning to leave hospital beds unstaffed.
This is a cynical policy that will continue to put patients at risk. Worksafe Tasmania has shown that being awake for 17 hours is equivalent to a blood alcohol level of 0.05.
If the Minister is serious about his promise of Tasmanians having the best health by 2025, he needs to stop announcing unfunded policies. The only way to safeguard patient care and look after the working conditions of nurses is to permanently employ more nurses and midwives.