Nursing Week Activities - Ontario

  1. Okay, guys, here's a chance to toot our horn a bit! Just had this press release forwarded to me by the Registered Nurses' Assoc. of Ontario, and I'm quite impressed!


    Nursing shortage spurs professional nurses' associations to launch
    multi-media ad campaign: Nurses. Sharing their Knowledge for Life.

    TORONTO - The Registered Nurses Association of Ontario (RNAO) and the
    Registered Practical Nurses Association of Ontario (RPNAO) launched a
    multi-media advertising campaign today as part of its strategy to help
    retain and recruit nurses while raising public awareness about the important
    and omnipresent roles nurses play in helping keep Ontarians healthy.

    "This campaign is one way our associations give voice and visibility to the
    realities and rewards of nursing while reminding the public of the
    inextricable link between nursing and quality health care," RNAO President
    Shirlee Sharkey said during a news conference on the eve of Nursing Week,
    May 7-13. And that crucial link, said RPNAO President Trish Nesbitt, will be
    broken without an infusion of new nurses, most of them working full time. As
    many as 90,000 new nurses will be needed to care for Ontarians over the next
    10 years.

    The campaign flows from recommendations accepted and supported by the
    Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care. Its theme is Nurses. Sharing their
    Knowledge for Life. Components include:

    - A series of three personal and provocative subway station posters
    featuring individual photographs of an infant (Nurses Raise Us.), an
    expectant mother (Nurses Transform Us.), and the aged hands of a senior
    sitting in a chair (Nurses Touch Us.). The narrative reads in part: "With
    the skill to heal and the commitment to care, nurses are with us every step
    of the way." The campaign will run for as long as eight weeks.

    - Two television spots: 60 Second Reports produced by Canada NewsWire and
    broadcast on CanWest Global Network Monday, May 7 and Wednesday, May 9 at
    6:57 p.m. In the reports, nurses are shown working in a range of areas -
    hospitals, homes, classrooms, communities, labs, long-term care facilities.
    An elderly couple who receives home care through the Toronto Community Care
    Access Centre speaks about how nurses provide families like them with both
    care and peace of mind.

    - A series of six public service announcements, which have been distributed
    to 175 radio stations across the province. The six 30-second spots feature
    the views and voices of working nurses - such as voices from Walkerton, from
    home-care and hospital settings, and from a returning nurse who couldn't
    stay away from the profession. In their own words, the nurses speak about
    their day-to-day contribution to the health and well-being of people's

    Donna Wells is featured in one of the radio spots with her seven-year-old
    daughter Kelsey who says she wants to be a nurse too. Wells' experience as a
    nurse embodies the profession's potential as well as its problems. At one
    point in her career, Wells worked three part-time nursing jobs to make a
    living - a reality that remains for too many nurses. (Almost 50 per cent -
    48 per cent - of nurses still work in part-time or casual positions; RNAO
    and RPNAO have recommended that employers aim for 70 per cent of staff
    working full-time.) But Wells has also had a wonderful array of experiences
    - working in post-op surgery and specialty clinics, teaching patients about
    to undergo operations, teaching nursing students clinical practice, caring
    for people in their homes, and now working as an administrator at the
    Scarborough Hospital.

    Sharkey said the campaign conveys several messages to potential nurses,
    working nurses and the public: Nursing, with its diverse array of
    opportunities, is a career worth turning - or returning - to. Nursing is as
    much about knowledge and expertise as compassion. Nurses, providing
    round-the-clock care for people at their neediest, hold-up the health-care
    system - and we need more of them. Nursing is an awesome responsibility,
    which the public recognizes and respects.

    The campaign, explained Nesbitt, will complement other RNAO/RPNAO projects
    in the works such as a speakers bureau, print, video and Web campaigns
    targeted to elementary and high school students, and job fairs. The latest
    job fair, co-sponsored by the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, will be
    held Monday, May 7 at the Holiday Inn, 370 King Street West, Toronto. More
    than 60 exhibitors - health-care employers, colleges and universities - will
    be attending the job fair along with hundreds of nurses and Health and
    Long-Term Care Minister Tony Clement, who will address the fair at 10 a.m.

    Sharkey said short-sighted policies have caused cyclical nursing shortages
    that are compounded by competition from other professions eager to recruit
    talented men and women. That's why, said Nesbitt, we cannot afford to repeat
    the mistakes of the past. We must provide nurses with stable, secure,
    full-time positions in working environments that let them provide the
    quality care the public deserves and nurses were educated to provide.


    ************************************************** ****


    Registered Nurses Association of Ontario to take political leaders to the
    frontlines of nursing care during Nursing Week celebrations May 7 - 13

    TORONTO - The Registered Nurses Association of Ontario (RNAO) is introducing
    something new to this year's roster of Nursing Week celebrations -
    on-the-job tours given to politicians by nurses working in a wide range of
    workplaces, including family homes, hospitals, community health centres,
    clinics, public health units, and long-term care facilities.

    Called Bring your MPP to Work: RNs do the rounds with their MPPs, the idea
    is the brainchild of RNAO Executive Director Doris Grinspun, who intends to
    make it an annual tradition. This year, Health and Long-Term Care Minister
    Tony Clement, Liberal Party Leader Dalton McGuinty and NDP Leader Howard
    Hampton have accepted RNAO's invitation to witness first-hand the care
    nurses provide people in many different ways in many different places.
    Ontario Hospital Association President David MacKinnon will also be
    participating in this year's inaugural tours.

    "These tours are a window on the working world of nursing, an excellent
    opportunity for politicians - and the public - to see and better understand
    just what it is registered nurses do," said Grinspun. "We want people to
    understand the wide range of responsibilities for which nurses are
    accountable, and recognize the important, often sensitive interactions
    nurses have with people in need of care - whether it be a nurse practitioner
    diagnosing a patient, a visiting nurse providing care for a patient (and
    peace of mind for the family), or an emergency nurse trusted to make
    critical decisions at a moment's notice," she said.

    The schedule for this year's "Bring your MPP to Work":

    - Tuesday, May 8, 4 p.m., Health and Long-Term Care Minister Tony Clement
    joins RNAO President Shirlee Sharkey to observe a "home visit" by Jaz
    Dhanji, RN, who cares for James Craig, a 32-year-old man who has been
    receiving home care since 1995. Craig's home care is funded by the North
    York Community Care Access Centre and provided by Saint Elizabeth Health

    - Thursday, May 10, 9 a.m., NDP Leader Howard Hampton and RNAO Executive
    Director Doris Grinspun will visit the Shout Clinic, 467 Jarvis Street, a
    clinic that provides primary health care to street-involved youth. They will
    be led by Marianne Surbeck, a nurse practitioner - one of the very first RNs
    to be registered in the extended class as a nurse practitioner. She works in
    a multi-disciplinary team with other nurses, including nurse practitioners,
    along with doctors, social workers, dentists, lawyers, dietitians, etc. to
    help street youth.

    - Thursday, May 10, 10 a.m., Liberal Leader Dalton McGuinty and RNAO
    President Shirlee Sharkey will visit the Parkdale Community Health Centre,
    1229 Queen Street West (Queen & Dufferin) where Executive Director Simone
    Hammond, along with community health nurses and nurse practitioners, will
    explain the critical work they do there.

    - Friday, May 11, 10 a.m., Ontario Hospital Association President David
    MacKinnon and RNAO Executive Director Doris Grinspun will visit patients and
    RNs at North York General Hospital.

    Other Nursing Week events include:

    - Nursing Recruitment and Retention Job Fair, Monday, May 7. RNAO and the
    Registered Practical Nurses Association of Ontario (RPNAO) with the support
    of the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care are hosting the third
    annual Nursing Week Job Fair, 8 a.m. to 4:15 p.m., Holiday Inn, 370 King
    Street West, Toronto. Free admission. More than 60 exhibitors from across
    the province - health-care employers and colleges and universities - will be
    attending and hundreds of nurses are expected to participate. Among the
    speakers: Honourable Tony Clement, Minister of Health and Long-Term Care,
    who speaks at 10 a.m.

    - Workshops and speaking engagements, including:

    - Wellington-Waterloo chapters of RNAO present President Shirlee Sharkey,
    Ontario Nurses' Association (ONA) President Barb Wahl and RPNAO President
    Elect Gabrielle Bridle Tuesday, May 8, 6 to 10 p.m., Grand Valley Golf
    Course, Cambridge. The leaders will speak about the nursing shortage/quality
    of work-life issues.

    - Thunder Bay Tuesday, May 8 and Wednesday, May 9. Presentation by RNAO
    Executive Director Doris Grinspun: "What would Miss Nightingale say? Nursing
    challenges and opportunities in the 21st century." Lakehead University.

    - Presentation on Nursing Employment Trends by Sue Bookey-Bassett, Program
    Development Manager, RNAO Centre for Professional Nursing Excellence:
    Tuesday, May 8, Humber River Regional Hospital (Finch Site); Wednesday, May
    9, Markham Stouffville Hospital; Wednesday, May 9, Southlake Regional Health
    Centre (Newmarket); Thursday, May 10, Humber River Regional Hospital (Church

    - Windsor, Wednesday, May 9, 6:15 to 9:30 p.m. Shirley Douglas, actress and
    Medicare activist, speaks at RNAO Essex Chapter and ONA Local 008 during
    wine and cheese event. C. Caboto Club, 2175 Parent Avenue.

    - Lunch and Learn session with Suzanne Gordon, award-winning author of From
    Silence to Voice: What Nurses Know and Must Communicate to the Public,
    Thursday, May 10, 12:30 to 2:30 p.m., RNAO Boardroom, 438 University Avenue,
    Suite 1600, Toronto. Gordon will also speak Friday, May 11, RNAO Centre for
    Professional Nursing Excellence Inaugural Innovations Breakfast, 8:30 to
    10:00 a.m., 438 University Avenue, Suite 1600.

    - Collingwood, Vacation Inn Resort & Club, Conference Centre. Nursing Week
    Celebration organized by RNAO Region 5, Friday, May 11, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
    Breakfast, workshop on "perfecting your political voice."

    RNAO and RPNAO also launched a multi-media advertising campaign on the eve
    of Nursing Week. Components of the campaign include a series of subway
    posters, six radio spots for province-wide distribution, and two Canada
    NewsWire 60-second Reports, to be broadcast on the Global Television News
    Network May 7 and May 9 at 6:57 p.m. (For more details on the campaign, view
    "Nursing shortage spurs professional associations to launch multi-media ad
    campaign: Nurses. Sharing their Knowledge for Life. or visit

    Meaghan Obee
    Executive Assistant to Doris Grinspun
    Registered Nurses Association of Ontario
    438 University Ave. Suite 1600
    Toronto, ON M5G 2K8
    (416) 599-1925 Ext. 207
    Fax: (416) 599-1926

    This, coupled with an article on the front page of the Toronto Star, saying that fewer nurses in Canada are unhappy with their jobs when compared with nurses in the States, gives me some cause to rejoice today. Mind you, I'll be a LOT happier when the number of dissatisfied nurses drops below the quoted 32.9 % for Canada, and 41.0 % for the U.S.! Keep on fighting, and maybe we can achieve this!
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