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PETERBOROUGH, Ont. Although studies show registered practical nurses (RPNs) offer skills in a wide scope of practice and are the most cost-effective way to provide nursing care for patients, the Peterborough Regional Health Centre has opted to cut 38 front line RPNs in an effort to balance its budget.

Patient care in Ontario hospitals is diminishing because most hospitals are underutilizing RPNs skills, or as in Peterborough, hospitals are eliminating many RPNs from the front line nursing team.

Because of provincial under funding, we do not have adequate nursing staffing levels in our hospitals. But cutting RPN staff who are a much more cost-effective human resource than Registered Nurses (RNs) is a misguided approach to finding budget efficiencies, says Joanne Wilson, a regional vice-president of the Ontario Council of Hospital Unions (OCHU) the hospital division of the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE).

Wilson will be joined by RPNs from the Peterborough hospital at a media conference to explain why RPNs are the most valuable and cost effective members of the nursing team.

  • WHO:
    Diane Crough, President CUPE Local 1943
    Joanne Wilson, Regional vice-president the Ontario Council of Hospital Unions (OCHU/CUPE)
    Registered Practical Nurses (RPNs)
    Peterborough Regional Health Centre

  • WHAT:
    Media Conference RPNs are the most valuable and cost effective member of the nursing team.

  • WHERE:
    Peterborough Regional Health Centre (Hospital Drive Site)
    Nutrition Conference Room, 1st floor
    1 Hospital Drive, Peterborough

  • WHEN:
    Wednesday, February 16, 2005 at 1:00 p.m.


For more information contact:
Diane Crough, President CUPE Local 1943 and Charlene Avon, CUPE National representative - (705) 761-4408
Joanne Wilson, Regional vice-president OCHU/CUPE - (905) 439-7404
Stella Yeadon, CUPE communications - (416) 578-8774