March 09, 2022
Nurses union slams return to work call
The Nurses Organisation is upset Covid-positive nurses are being asked to return to work.
New Ministry of Health guidance says non-symptomatic Covid-positive workers can go back to work without isolating if a service risked being substantially compromised due to a lack of staff.
They can return to work on day six after they had returned a negative RAT, or work on wards where all patients had Covid.
Union kaiwhakahaere Kerri Nuku says the order creates an unacceptable risk for the public and for a heath workforce that is already burnt out and fatigued.
“This whole dilemma is shambolic. We need to make sure that while we stand up during this, there are some tough conversations that need to be had because we can’t keep changing health orders to respond to a crisis that this Government and previous Governments have chosen to ignore,” she says.
Kerri Nuku says one in five nurses are currently off-work.