Ontario is providing funding for up to 75 new attending nurse practitioners in long-term care homes over three years, including 30 starting this fall.
The new attending nurse practitioners will be the onsite primary care provider for patients. Working as part of a team of health professionals, these new nurses will help strengthen the care that residents receive in long-term care homes and the community.
“This is another example of ways we are improving care for residents of our long-term care homes. The addition of nurse practitioners is an investment to provide better quality of life and care. I want to congratulate all involved in this initiative.” said. Dipika Damerla, Associate Minister of Health and Long-Term Care
The attending nurse practitioners will address the complex care needs of residents by delivering and coordinating services including:
Proactive assessments and screenings
Timely specialist referrals
Ongoing chronic disease management
As highly trained and experienced health professionals, nurse practitioners combine advanced nursing knowledge and a deep understanding of health management, health promotion, and disease and injury prevention.
“The Nurse Practitioners’ Association of Ontario is thrilled to see Minister Damerla and the Wynne government deliver on their commitment to integrate more nurse practitioners into long-term care homes. Evidence shows that the utilization of nurse practitioners as most responsible practitioner in long-term care homes is associated with fewer falls for residents, fewer transfers to hospitals, better staff satisfaction and better value.” said Theresa Agnew, Executive Director, Nurse Practitioners’ Association of Ontario (NPAO)
“RNAO is delighted that residents living in nursing homes, and their families, will have the added benefit of an attending nurse practitioners’ expertise. RNAO is proud to have played a central role in envisioning and developing this policy and practice improvement.” added, Doris Grinspun, Chief Executive Officer of the Registered Nurses’ Association of Ontario (RNAO)
Increasing the number of nurse practitioners in long-term care homes is part of the government’s plan to build a better Ontario through its Patients First: Action Plan for Health Care, which is providing patients with faster access to the right care, better home and community care, the information they need to stay healthy and a health care system that’s sustainable for generations to come.
30 new attending nurse practitioners will begin work in long-term care homes this fall.
The number of nurse practitioners working in Ontario has increased to 2,209 in 2014, up 7.4 per cent from 2013.
Nurse practitioners provide a full range of health care services to individuals, families and communities in Ontario. More than half of all Ontario nurse practitioners practice primary care, with the remainder focused on geriatrics, acute care, emergency care and cardiac care.
Ontario is a frontrunner in the use of nurse practitioner-led clinics. First introduced in 2007, there are currently 25 operational nurse practitioner-led clinics, which provide primary care to more than 49,000 people.