Raking in the Bucks

My jaw dropped to the floor and narrowly missed striking the cat on the head when I saw this:

The highest-paid nurse in the Regina Qu’Appelle Health Region earned close to a quarter of a million dollars last year.

The top five salaries paid to registered nurses in the RQHR ranged from $180,530 to $243,540.

The nurse earning $243,540 was employed on a nursing unit at Regina Pioneer Village, while the second highest wage earner was an emergency room nurse who received $186,562.

Now, the top base salary for nurses in Saskatchewan is around $84,000 per year. Which means, roughly, the nurse making over 240K a year was working, approximately, 80-some hours a week, each and every week of the year.

My first question: is he or she freaking nuts?

My second question: how can this nurse provide safe and competent when she or he  is working, literally, every day of the week for a year?

My third question: why would his/her manager permit it?


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  1. #1 by Cartoon Character on Tuesday 10 August 2010 - 1855

    I found the same thing in the Health Authorities in B.C. Do you think they are doing more than just floor work, even though that is what they are labelled as?
    For example: Fraser Health Authority – http://www.vancouversun.com/business/public-sector-salaries/advanced.html?appSession=696168739241367&RecordID=&PageID=2&PrevPageID=2&cpipage=1&CPIsortType=desc&CPIorderby=Agency
    You can look up anyone. Put in a name, and it comes up. If you are working as an RN or whatever….everyone can see what you make. That almost bothers me more than HOW MUCH someone is making. Where is the privacy?

    But I agree with you. If someone is working that many hours…how safe is it?

  2. #2 by Art Doctor on Tuesday 10 August 2010 - 2142

    This robotic-work-ethic reminds me of the perfectionist personality type—the one in the office/nursing station (p.s- is this politically correct anymore? Patronizing? Maybe o-kay b/c acknowledges that Nurses do (all) the work?) who smirks/grimaces before responding to your comment/thought/idea/explanation/joke/question and then gives you a yes or no response, followed by a “meh” or a “ho-hum” or a “huff” (great tv show that was cancelled-blame it on the coke). I mean, it’s almost as if they want you to mutate into their personality—the sarcasm is contagious—unless you can maintain your cool, calm and focus on your breath. Seriously, these people piss me off. I often find myself shaking my head in disbelief that they can be all about work and absolutely no enjoyment whatsoever. It seems as if these people are the ones to wear the dorkiest nerdiest clothes and shoes from Marks Work Wear House with teddybear robots on them, or plaid shorts on a Tuesday~!


    That was fun.

    Here’s to fun at work (Sour candy at 2pm/coffee/granola bars, reading horoscope until the clock hits 9am…oh… what a rebel I am…not)!

  3. #3 by Terri Schmitt on Wednesday 11 August 2010 - 1239

    Hmmm… me thinks me needs to move to Canada. Geez. Low paid area anyway here in U.S. after 12 years of college I barely clear 50K per year and that is with over-load.. packing my bags now.

    Also, yes, working 80 hours a week is a safety issue. Wondering if we need regulations like pilots? Likewise, think how much that nurse paid in taxes, didn’t take home all of that 240K. Govt. would have gotten 1/2 of it here in the U.S.

  4. #4 by Zoe on Wednesday 11 August 2010 - 2204

    We have a couple of RN’s like that at our hospital. How do they do it? Well, for one, they tend to float to other units. One RN I know works full time in ICU, but picks up OT in CCU, ER, and Step-down. That being said, he also takes off all of June, July, & August as vacation. Most units, when short-staffed, are happy to have an experienced RN come in, so I kinda think managers look the other way.

    But yeah, I have safety concerns too.

  5. #5 by jennjilks on Thursday 12 August 2010 - 0905

    TERN, what do you think about this story?
    Muskoka’s paramedics ahead of the pack
    MUSKOKA – Primary care paramedics across the province were recently required to adhere to new training standards. As a result, primary care paramedics in Ottawa were stripped of their ability to…

    I thought there was a reason they didn’t administer pain control until they got to the hospital, or am I wrong?

    • #6 by torontoemerg on Thursday 12 August 2010 - 1016

      That depends on the municipality and the training — I know some paramedics are allowed to give Fentanyl (a shorter acting narcotic). Thanks for the article: I wasn’t awae of the changes and will have to look them up.

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