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Four nurses among 13 Island Health employees earning over $300,000 a year

Cowichan Valley's Chief Medical Officer received $328,721

Four registered nurses are among 13 Island Health employees earning more than $300,000 per year, research by shows.

The nurses’ incomes exceed those of several doctors who work as medical health officers in the region, according to Island Health’s Statement of Financial Information for the fiscal year ended Mar. 31, 2023.

The four are: Nashhater Kaur Sahota, $360,973; Bimla Parmar, $347,829; Nasrin Saleh, $331,044; and Jennifer A. Jones, $309,208.

Asked to explain how nurses can earn that amount, Island Health said in an emailed statement: “All compensation for unionized employees would be in line with and according to their collective agreement….

“Nothing further to add.”

Island Health would not say where the four nurses work or their specific jobs.

Read more at CHEK News:

Colleen Price, chair of the Bachelor of Science in Nursing Program at Vancouver Island University, said: “I have no idea how nurses might be making over $300,000 per year. Nursing faculty are certainly not making that money nor are our wages keeping up to the health authority wages.”

Effective April 1, 2022, the wage scale for BC registered nurses ranged from $6,121 to $9,668 per month, based on years of experience and their roles and responsibilities.

That range increased to $6,534 to $11,418 per month effective April 1, 2023.

Those amounts will increase further effective April 1, 2024, however cost-of-living adjustments have not yet been confirmed.

There are several ways for nurses to build upon these base wages.

The 2022-25 collective agreement between the Nurses Bargaining Association and the Health Employers Association of BC provides for hourly premiums for shifts worked in evenings, nights, and weekends.

There is a also a “super shift premium” for work from 11:30 p.m. to 7:30 a.m. on weekends.

In addition, there are “on-call” and “call-back” premiums, and “responsibility pay” for being in charge of a unit or department.

Further, there are overtime and holiday pay provisions in the collective agreement.

When working a paid holiday, nurses receive two times their rate of pay and a day off with pay, increased to 2.5 times their rate of pay plus a day off with pay on certain “super stats” — Christmas Day, Labour Day, or Good Friday. Overtime provisions may also apply, including for work on a paid holiday.


There are also provisions in the collective agreement for “isolation travel allowance” for work in more remote communities.

Here is the full list of the 13 Island Health employees earning more than $300,000 per year:

— Dr. Brian Emerson, $439,738 - Deputy Provincial Health Officer

— Kathryn MacNeil, $369,169 - President and CEO

— Nashhater Kaur Sahota, $360,973 - registered nurse

— Dr. Charmaine Enns, $349,103 - Medical Health Officer, North Vancouver Island.

— Bimla Parmar, $347,829 - registered nurse

— Nasrin Saleh, $331,044 - registered nurse

— Dr. Shannon Waters, $328,721 - Medical Health Officer, Central Vancouver Island

— Dr. Sandra Allison, $325,239 - Medical Health Officer, Central Vancouver Island

— Dr. Dee Hoyano, $318,113 - Medical Health Officer, South Vancouver Island.

— Dr. Murray Fyfe, $315,888- Medical Health Officer,, South Vancouver Island.

— Kim Kerrone, - $310,765 - Vice President, Support Services and Chief Financial Officer

— Jennifer A. Jones, - $309,208 - registered nurse

— Dr. Michael Benusic, $305,301 - Medical Health Officer, Central Vancouver Island

Island Health employed about 33,000 people in the 2022-23 fiscal year, 8,264 of whom earned more than $75,000.

Of the 8,264 employees, 4,244 were nurses, 1,413 non-contract staff and physicians, 1,559 paramedicals, and 1,048 miscellaneous jobs.

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— Larry Pynn, March 6, 2024

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