Last week, the anesthesiologists were given a 'final offer' in a pay dispute that has been ongoing for years. The dispute has impacted on the quality of care that mothers at Victoria General Hospital have been able to access during labour and delivery.
This week the anesthesiologists have offered $3 million of their own funding to help recruit staff to help high-risk pregnant mothers and their babies.
Unfortunately, unless offers become deals, the situation at Victoria General Hospital (and other level 3 hospitals in BC that do not have DOBA) is unlikely to change. So far the track record for resolving the problem is less than inspiring. Unless the offer made on December 1 is competitive with what is available in other provinces, I don't think its very likely that the anesthesiologists will accept it. Further, unless the BCMA and the Ministry of Health are willing to work with the anesthesiologists on their offer of $3 million to recruit maternity staff - it is unlikely to have any impact in practice.
I am watching this situation unfold, and am truly hoping for the best as patient care needs to be the priority in this province - too many moms and babies have already paid a rather dear price while the BCMA, BCAS, and Ministry of Health have squabbled.