El­derly must have nurses’ care

Townsville Bulletin - - OPINION -

I WRITE to de­tail grave con­cerns for el­derly Queens­lan­ders housed with BlueCare.

On July 18, the once- trusted aged care provider an­nounced it would greatly re­duce the num­ber of ex­pe­ri­enced Reg­is­tered Nurses ( RNs) and En­rolled Nurses ( ENs) at three Bund­aberg aged care fa­cil­i­ties.

On the same day, man­age­ment an­nounced per­sonal car­ers would soon be­come re­spon­si­ble for ad­min­is­ter­ing and mon­i­tor­ing of­ten com­plex com­bi­na­tions of med­i­ca­tions. If in­cor­rectly ad­min­is­tered, these med­i­ca­tions have the po­ten­tial to cause harm.

Per­sonal car­ers pro­vide a valu­able as­sis­tive role in aged care. How­ever, with just six hours train­ing and lim­ited knowl­edge of phar­ma­col­ogy, they can­not safely ad­min­is­ter or mon­i­tor med­i­ca­tions.

The Queens­land Nurses and Mid­wives’ Union ( QNMU) holds very real con­cerns for the well­be­ing of BlueCare res­i­dents in Bund­aberg — and any­where else where BlueCare at­tempt to re­place de­gree- trained RNs or ENs with car­ers.

I urge any­one with a loved one with BlueCare to ask for a guar­an­tee nurse num­bers will not be re­duced.

Those pay­ing BlueCare to pro­vide med­i­cal at­ten­tion have ev­ery right to re­quest that their mother, fa­ther or rel­a­tive does not re­ceive med­i­ca­tion from a per­sonal carer.

They also have the right to re­quest a staff ros­ter, to ask how many nurses are ros­tered on dur­ing the day and at night ( if any) and to ask why nurse num­bers are be­ing re­duced.

We ask any­one with con­cerns to sign the QNMU’s pe­ti­tion against BlueCare at h t t p s : / / w w w . m e g a - phone. org. au/ pet i t i ons/ s up­port- blue- care- nurs­ing- staff

BETH MOHLE, Sec­re­tary, Queens­land Nurses and Mid­wives’ Union

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