Quebec spends $100 million to keep nurses in public sector

Incentives include annual bonuses for new and mature nurses

The Quebec government is pumping $100 million into incentive programs to keep nurses working in the public sector.

The province hopes the incentives will reduce the temptation for nurses to leave the public sector in favour of well-paying private agencies, said Health Minister Yves Bolduc.

The program includes annual bonuses of $3,000 for three years for graduating nurses who commit to work a certain number of hours in the public health-care sector and $2,000 for graduating nurse practitioners.

The government will also give experienced nurses who agree to delay their retirement an annual bonus of $8,000 over three years.

However, Quebec's Federation of Nurses called the plan "insulting" to all other nurses. The majority of nurses in the province are between their fourth and 34th year and they don't benefit at all from the incentives, said Michelle Boisclair, vice-president of the federation.

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