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Manitoba Health-Care Workers Need Better Protection: Survey

April 10, 2020 11:25 AM | News


Medical workers treat a patient with COVID-19 in the intensive care unit at the University Hospital (CHUV) during the state of emergency of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in Lausanne, Switzerland, Friday, April 3, 2020. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Pool Photo via AP)

WINNIPEG — A new survey of Manitoba’s front-line health-care workers says the provincial government isn’t doing enough to protect them during the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic.

The CUPE member survey, released on Friday, polled nearly 1,900 health-care workers and found 58 percent of them felt they had not been provided with enough personal protective equipment (PPE) to keep themselves and their patients safe.

“Manitoba health-care workers are telling us that they need more support from the government and the health authorities,” said Shannon McAteer, CUPE’s health care coordinator.

For home care workers, 77 percent of those reported a lack of PPE.

“During a pandemic we need every health-care worker to have the training, personal protective equipment, and supports they require to get the job done. If health-care workers feel that they aren’t being supported, then the entire system suffers,” added McAteer.


The survey also found:

  • 53 percent of health-care support worker respondents reported receiving insufficient COVID-19 training
  • 68 percent of home care respondents reported insufficient training.63 percent of health-care support workers feel the government is not doing enough to keep health care
  • workers safe.

“It worries us that the confidence in government is so low among so many health care support staff,” said McAteer.

“Nearly two-thirds of health care support workers who answered our survey felt the government hasn’t been doing enough to keep them safe. We hope the government takes note of this and acts to support front-line support workers.”

The online straw poll was conducted between March 30 and April 5. In total, 1,877 CUPE health-care members participated in the survey.