Nurses rally at the B.C. legislature, calling for safer working conditions, 2015. (Tom Fletcher/Black Press)

B.C. nurses, emergency dispatchers get help for work-related trauma

WorkSafeBC changes also extend to publicly funded care aides

Treatment for work-related post-traumatic stress disorder is being extended to emergency dispatchers, nurses and care aides in B.C.

Labour Minister Harry Bains announced that post-traumatic stress disorder and related mental conditions are being extended to those job categories in workers compensation regulations, effective Tuesday. The regulation already covers police, paramedics, sheriffs, correctional officers and firefighters.

The changes “are about fairness and support for workers who receive higher-than-average mental harm due to the jobs they do on behalf of British Columbians,” Bains said.

B.C. Nurses Union president Christine Sorensen said the change is a welcome result after years of the union’s campaign to highlight violence against nurses and other health care workers.

READ MORE: Two nurses attacked at B.C. psychiatric hospital

Jennifer Whiteside, secretary-business manager for the Hospital Employees Union, said care aides respond to unexpected deaths, including suicides, as well as threats and intimidation.

Oliver Gruter-Andrew, CEO of E-Comm, the largest 9-1-1 call centre in B.C., said dispatchers “are the first contact for people experiencing trauma and that’s often traumatic for them as well.”

The regulation change means employees in designated jobs are presumed to be covered if they are diagnosed with the stress-related condition and medical evidence shows it is work related.

A similar change was announced last week for cancer, heart disease and mental-health disorders for wildfire fighters, fire investigators and firefighters working for Indigenous organizations.


@tomfletcherbc
tfletcher@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

One-day-a-year open house for Okanagan raptor rehab centre on May 5

The 31st annual open house for SORCO Raptor Rehab Centre is May 5

Okanagan-Shuswap weather: Sun makes way for rain clouds

Environment Canada is forecasting a mixed bag of conditions

Hundreds join in Easter Fun Days in Keremeos

Kids and parents enjoyed some free family fun time at Don and Anna’s in Keremeos.

Maxime Bernier, leader of People’s Party of Canada, to rally support in Kelowna

The PPC has 36,000 member and plans to run candidates in all 338 ridings

Update: RCMP confirm body found at Kelowna’s Gyro Beach

Police tape is blocking part of the beach and several RCMP officers are on scene.

Sri Lanka invokes war-time military powers after nearly 300 killed in Easter bombings

Sri Lanka’s minister of tourism says 39 foreign tourists were killed in the Easter Sunday attacks

Trudeau to be portrayed on ‘Simpsons’ episode

Toronto journalist who’s posted videos of himself doing impressions of the PM voiced him for the show

Big Sugar headlines Gonzo Okanagan tournament and festival

The second annual event will take place June 14

Elizabeth May’s wedding dress a ‘walk through a garden’ on Earth Day

Green Party leader set to get married in Victoria

Salmon Arm inventor creates rooftop sprinklers to protect from wildfires

The Water Winger can be placed at the peak of a roof without climbing a ladder

Video: South Okanagan business owner distraught over thefts

Video shows two suspects enter the Penticton store

Bodies of 3 mountain climbers recovered after last week’s Banff avalanche

The men disappeared while attempting to climb the east face of Howse Peak in the Icefields Parkway

Happy birthday: Queen Elizabeth II turns 93 on Easter Sunday

Sunday is the first of two birthday celebrations each year for the queen

Kelowna History: Street name origins

Have you ever wondered who the streets were named after?

Most Read