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Hospital in Newmarket laying off nearly 100 registered nurses

A nurse who is working during the COVID-19 pandemic in Toronto. (Steve Russell via Getty Images)

In the midst of a pandemic, Southlake Hospital in Newmarket is laying off nearly 100 registered nurses, citing financial challenges.

With the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic and the upcoming flu season, the president of the Ontario Nurses Association calls Soutlake’s decision to layoff 97 nurses “completely irresponsible” and warns it will put undue pressure on all hospitals.

The hospital said it’s facing significant financial challenges and its own substantial deficit is unrelated to COVID-19, predating the pandemic.

Southlake did receive a funding increase of more than $5-million this year to expand front-line services for York Region

The hospital said while it is laying off the registered nurses, it’s planning to add 49 registered practical nurse positions, 29 patient services partner positions and three social worker positions.

ONA President Vicki McKenna said more than 176,000 hours of RN direct patient care will be lost to the cuts.

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