Registed Nurses' Association of Ontario

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Nurses must be fully vaccinated immediately

As Nursing Week approaches (May 10-16), RNAO has a message for Premier Ford and his government: There is an immediate need for nurses to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19. 

RNAO says the risks posed in hospital ICUs and other critical care units, emergency departments, operating rooms and other settings are too great and the lives of nurses needed to sustain a fragile health system battling COVID-19 must be fully protected. 

“We’ve heard from hundreds of nurses in health organizations across the province who are gravely concerned. They are nursing patients who are extremely ill with COVID-19, they are giving it their all and they feel abandoned by a government that refuses to protect them fully,” says Dr. Doris Grinspun, RNAO’s CEO, adding she has repeatedly communicated this directly to the premier, minister of health and other government officials.

The government must ensure all nurses – starting with those working with COVID-19 patients – are RNAO says the government must ensure all nurses – starting with those working with COVID-19 patients – are immediately vaccinated with both COVID-19 doses. 

As noted by RNAO President Morgan Hoffarth in our media release: “getting second doses of the vaccine into nurses’ arms must be a priority to ensure we don’t end up with ill nurses – including as patients in ICU. This is critical to protect them and also to decrease the level of stress. We do not have a surplus of nurses so we have to make sure our colleagues are taken care of and respected for the work they do because their loved ones and our health system need them. So far we have received no assurances or a starting date from the premier or anyone on his team.”

Last Updated: 
2021-05-07