Aged-care industrial adviser Lesley Harry said the week would provide an opportunity to highlight the need for mandatory staffing levels in aged residential care (ARC), including more registered and enrolled nurses to support the valuable work of caregivers.
“More caregivers are telling us they are doing more complex nursing care and that they do not feel safe working without the ready availability of an RN, but the RN may be working in another part of the facility.”
NZNO’s national aged-care delegates and NZNO and E tū staff will meet in April or May to plan the year’s campaign activities for mandatory safe staffing levels in ARC.
Other plans for the year ahead include bargaining, with collective agreements in a number of the large ARC chains due to be renegotiated in June/July. “Our pay strategy for the sector includes the need to achieve pay parity for RNs and ENs with district health board members and also maintaining the value of the care and support workers’ settlement for health-care assistants/caregivers.”