Include Medical Imaging Technologists for Ontario’s Pandemic Pay

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I want to begin this by applauding Doug Ford’s decision to implement pandemic pay to various frontline workers during this extremely scary and uncertain time. The only issue I have with this, is that I believe some people have been excluded from this benefit, specifically medical imaging technologists.

My mother is a sonographer that works in an acute care hospital that has been designated the COVID-19 site for the Niagara region. I am so proud of my mom and her co workers for putting their fear aside everyday and going in with a smile on their faces to help the sick patients that need them to help diagnose them  so they can be treated and hopefully get better.

Sonographers and other medical imaging technologists have a job that does not allow them to have a 2 metre separation between them and their patients and their assessments require them to be exposed to their patients for a minimum of 20 minutes at a time, causing them to be risking their health everyday, multiple times a day.

I watch my mother leave for work everyday with uncertainty and fear that she is putting her health, as well as the health of me and my other family members at risk but she continues to put a brave face on because she knows her position as a sonographer is crucial and extremely important to the treatment and care of COVID-19 and other patients during this time. She not only provides medical care but she also treats every patient with dignity and makes sure to listen to and talk reassuringly to everyone she encounters on a daily basis because she knows that many of these people are scared and lonely, without being able to see their families. Although she has to wear PPE, I think the patients she encounters  can see her smile behind her mask, which probably means the world to them in this time of fear.

For these reasons and many more, I believe medical imaging technologists are extremely important frontline people within hospitals previous to the COVID-19 pandemic and now especially. With all due respect Premier Ford, I don’t know what you based your criteria for who is included for this pandemic pay on, but I for certain can tell you that my mom as well as the rest of the medical imaging technologists working in the hospitals throughout Ontario are more than deserving of receiving pandemic pay.