A Canadian military contractor is being investigated after the CBC News network learned it’s using a program that lets a civilian nurse use the U.S. military’s own urine system.
In a letter sent Monday to the military’s director of health and medical services, the civilian nurse who runs the UBS Urgent Care System, said she found the program “highly problematic.”
“I have grave concerns about the risk of harm from using the UBC UrgentCare System as a part of a clinical workforce for the military,” the letter says.
“As a civilian in the same position as a nurse, you have the duty and responsibility to be responsible for ensuring your own safety.”
The UBS system is used by nearly 2,000 U.K.-based nursing homes to provide urgent care, including emergency treatment for patients who are in critical condition, or for those with chronic medical conditions.
The UBS is a national provider of the Urgent care system to more than 10,000 Canadian military hospitals and medical facilities.
It was initially established to provide emergency medical care, but the program has grown to include all types of medical services including dialysis, dialysis machines, and other procedures.
“I am deeply concerned about the possibility that this type of technology could be used by the military for medical purposes,” said the letter, signed by former nurse Marie-Claude Cernan, a professor of nursing at the University of British Columbia.
“While I would prefer to use the UrentCare system as a primary care physician, it is not my place to judge the ability of the U BC System to provide critical care for military personnel.”
“If you are concerned about safety and security of staff members, please consider taking steps to limit your access to the Urgency Care System,” Cernans letter says, which was also signed by a former nurse at the Royal Military College of Canada.
Cernans’ letter comes as the CBC is investigating how a civilian, in charge of a U.B.C. system that operates at more than 1,300 facilities, was allowed to use UBS urine samples without her permission.
Cohn’s letter to the federal government said the UB.
S., in which she works, has developed a system to administer the Urient Care System for civilian use and she had never heard of it before.
“The military system in Canada is not a federal entity and has no authority over the Canadian National Urgentcare System,” the statement says.
In addition to the potential risk of misuse, there is also concern about the cost, said Cernancans co-founder and chief executive officer of the Canadian Nurses Association.
The U.A.C., which was created to address the health of nurses and other health care workers during the Vietnam War, has been operating since 1987.
The system has been used by about 7,000 nursing homes in the United States and Canada, and is administered by more than 3,200 military hospitals.
In the US., a nurse at a military hospital in Hawaii was found to have used the system.
In a letter to U.C.’s head of nursing, the nurse said she has “serious concerns” about the military program, but had been told it’s not being used in a clinical setting.
“In my experience, it has not been used in clinical settings and I am extremely concerned,” she wrote.
The CBC’s investigative team is examining the matter, and Cernuns letter comes amid a broader debate about the future of the urinalysis program in the military.
The Pentagon is considering making the program mandatory, though there are still concerns that it could be abused.
The military said last month it would scrap the program if there were “no assurances that the program is safe.”
The Canadian military has said the program would be tested before it goes forward.