Nurses union raises alarm about new overtime restrictions at Alberta Health Services – CBC

AHS asks managers to rein in spending on overtime pay and private nursing agencies

Jan 09, 2024

Financial trouble is prompting Alberta Health Services to cut back on overtime pay, reduce reliance on private staffing agencies and leave some jobs vacant, says a leaked memo to health leaders.

The memo, obtained last Friday by the United Nurses of Alberta, says AHS is forecasting a deficit for its 2023-24 fiscal year.

“We acknowledge areas of the health-care system continue to be stressed,” writes acting chief financial officer Michael Lam in the memo. An AHS spokesperson verified the document is authentic.

Lam says the financial shortfall is due mostly to increased vacant jobs and sick leaves driving up overtime pay costs and increasing reliance on pricey private staffing agencies.

Last year, AHS said employees worked 2.3 times more overtime in 2022-23 compared to three years earlier.

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