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OTTAWA, July 24, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Canada's nurses, as represented by the Canadian Federation of Nurses Unions (CFNU), are questioning the recommendation that the Canadian Patient Safety Institute (CPSI) be merged into the proposed Healthcare Innovation Agency of Canada as recommended by the Advisory Panel on Healthcare Innovation in its report, Unleashing Innovation: Excellent Healthcare for Canada.
"Since 2003, the CPSI has given patients and families a voice in our healthcare system. It has ensured that the issue of patient safety is a national priority, central to any discussion about the future of our health care system," said Linda Silas, President of the Canadian Federation of Nurses Unions. "We are concerned that the original mission of the CPSI will be diluted in the proposed Innovation Agency. We must maintain an organization whose fundamental mission is the improvement of patient safety and the quality of patient care."
Last year, CFNU published a report by Dr. Maura MacPhee entitled Valuing Patient Safety: Responsible Workforce Design which vividly documents the effects of the UK's failure to focus on patient safety in the Mid-Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust. The report noted that the NHS has taken steps towards making patient safety a priority and improving transparency and public accountability. It recommended that we implement similar measures in Canada.
Silas commended the Advisory Panel for its acknowledgement that "federal action and investment" are needed if we are to prevent the decline in Canada's health care performance relative to our peers. She added, "Both the CFNU and the Premiers have called on the federal government to cover at least 25% of total health care spending by the provinces and territories."
The Canadian Federation of Nurses Unions represents close to 200,000 nurses and student nurses. Our members work in hospitals, long-term care facilities, community health care and our homes.
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