Gala MC

Erin Davis


Erin DavisErin Davis is well known as host of Erin & Darren in the Morning. Erin called CHFI home nearly continuously for over 28 years, beginning in 1988, when she began doing news on the popular Daynard Drive-in.

In the summer of 2003, Erin saw a lifelong dream come true when the W Network called and offered her the opportunity to host her own TV show: W Live with Erin Davis.

Also in the summer of '03, Erin was contacted by theatrical producer Ross Petty, who invited her to audition for the part of Fairy Godmother in his annual Christmas family pantomime Cinderella.

In the fall of 2004, the magic continued. Erin had the opportunity to meet and work with Mike Cooper, one of Canada's best-known radio personalities, while she was temporarily filling in on another Toronto radio station. Erin and Mike hit it off immediately and enjoyed great success together so, when CHFI asked Erin to come back in the fall of '05, her new friend Mike was not far behind, and the two continued to make radio magic for more than a decade, until Mike's retirement in January 2016.

In 2008, the first Erin Davis - Women in Media bursary was awarded to a student at Erin's alma mater, Loyalist College. This annual award was established by Erin and her family, in part to recognize and assist promising media students.

Erin now lives on Vancouver Island with Rob, her husband of 29 years. She is currently filling in hosting middays on CHFI's sister station in Victoria, Ocean 98.5. She also does freelance corporate and commercial voicework and is also working on a book.

Erin writes a daily internet journal, available at About five thousand people enjoy her written journal and its audio version every day and, as in every aspect of her life, Erin is very, very grateful. You can write to her by clicking here.

Keynote Speakers

Margaret Trudeau, Celebrated Canadian | Mental Health Advocate


Margaret TrudeauMargaret Trudeau Margaret Trudeau is a Canadian icon, celebrated both for her role in the public eye and as a respected mental-health issues advocate. From becoming a prime minister’s wife at a young age, to the loss of both her son and her former husband, to living with bi-polar disorder, Margaret tirelessly shares her personal stories to remind others of the importance of nurturing the body, mind, and spirit.

Margaret is the author of four books, including her bestselling title, Changing My Mind, which charts her life’s ups and downs, and her latest title, The Time of Your Life, which offers women an inspirational and practical approach to creating a healthy, happy, secure and satisfying future.

Margaret sits on the Executive Advisory Board of the UBC Mental Health Institute as a community advocate, and she is the Honorary President of WaterAid, a charitable Canadian non-governmental agency that is dedicated to helping poor communities in developing countries build sustainable water-supply and sanitation services. She is also the proud mother to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

Sue Matthews, CEO, Royal Women’s Hospital, Melbourne, Australia

Session Title: Practically Speaking: An International Comparison of Registered Practical Nurse (RPN) Roles To Identify Best Practices

Session Description:

The use and sustainability of practical nursing in Ontario will be shaped by a range of factors and forces. This presentation provides profiles of nursing education, regulation and utilization in various countries, and relates them to best practise in the use of practical nursing. It describes a global snapshot of regulation and representation of Practical/Enrolled nurses in a number of countries to allow us to better understand the models for professionalism for Practical/Enrolled nursing.


Sue is an experienced health service leader and manager with more than 20 years of senior operational and strategic leadership in hospitals, community care and government. She has held a variety of positions from Staff Nurse, Educator, Manager, Director, and Provincial Chief Nursing Officer for Ontario.

She is a Director of the Victorian Comprehensive Cancer Centre, the Melbourne Academic Centre for Health and the Victorian Healthcare Association of which she is deputy chair. She sits on a number of advisory committees including the Victorian Family Violence Steering Committee and the Victorian Clinical Council.

Sue holds an R.N Diploma, a Bachelor of Arts in Health Studies, a Master’s of Health Science Nursing, and a Doctorate in Public Health. She is also a Fellow of the Wharton School of Business in Philadelphia and a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

She is appointed as Adjunct Professor at Trent University.

Sue has won numerous awards including One of Canada’s Top 100 Most Powerful Women and the Canadian Nurses Association Centennial Award.

Sue has extensive research experience having been a Principal Investigator, co-Principal investigator or Decision Maker Partner on over 30 research projects or programs. She has also been primary or co-author of 13 publications.

Jann Arden, Renowned Musician | Bestselling Author


Jann ArdenJann Arden can bring a hall full of people to tears through song, only to have them, moments later, rolling in the aisles, through her off-the-cuff comedy. Whether she’s performing her music, hosting an event, or telling her deeply personal and affecting stories, Arden’s wisdom and wit shine in everything she does.

Arden catapulted onto the Canadian music scene in 1993, with the release of her debut album, Time For Mercy. To date, she has released 13 albums, boasts 19 top-10 singles, and has received eight Juno Awards, including “Female Artist of the Year” and “Songwriter of the Year.” She has also been recognized with 10 SOCAN Awards, four Western Canadian Music Awards, a Much Music Video Award, three Prairie Music Awards, and an Alberta Recording Industry Association Award. And the list goes on: she has been honoured with a star on Canada’s Walk of Fame, and inducted into the Canadian Association of Broadcasters Hall of Fame.

Of course, never one to settle on a single discipline, Arden was the host of Being Jann on CBC Radio; she has been a judge on television’s Canada Sings, and has appeared on CBC TV’s Rick Mercer Report and in several sitcoms; she is also a returning co-host of CTV’s The Social; on stage, she was part of the cast for the Canadian tour of The Vagina Monologues. Her most recent album of original material is Everything Almost, released in the spring of 2014 which was followed in 2015 by her first seasonal album titled A Jann Arden Christmas.

Arden is the author of four books, including If I Knew, Don’t You Think I’d Tell You?; I'll Tell You One Damn Thing and That’s All I Know; and Falling Backwards, the widely praised memoir of her life in rural Canada.


Barbara Jones, Director, Nursing Innovation, RPNAO

Session Title: Using the RPN Innovation Fund to Optimize the Role of the RPN: A Summary of Provincial Engagement

Session Description: The RPN Innovation Fund was established in March 2016. The intention of the RPNAO is to use this fund to support the optimization of the RPN role to meet patient/family/community needs moving into the next decade. In order to identify the highest impact areas for use of the fund, a broad stakeholder engagement process was undertaken between January and May of this year. This session will present a summary of stakeholder engagement from the Optimizing the RPN Role Provincial tour, expert interviews and the online engagement survey. Initial priority areas will also be identified.


Barb has been a nurse for almost 30 years. She obtained her BScN from the University of Toronto and also has a Master of Worldview Studies and a Master of Science with a focus in Nursing. Barb’s direct practice was focused in paediatrics although she has worked in a variety of sectors with patients of all ages. For the past 15 years, Barb has held a number of leadership roles in professional practice, quality improvement and patient safety. She is an expert facilitator, with specific training in alternative dispute resolution and Deep Democracy. Barb has a passion for the possible and unleashing the potential of individuals, teams and systems…which is why she thinks her current role at the RPNAO just may be the perfect job for her.

Gail Paech, Chief Executive Officer, Associated Medical Services

Session Title: Introducing Change Day Ontario

Session Description: This session will introduce a new provincial healthcare initiative, Change Day Ontario and will identify how each and every RPN in Ontario can participate.


Ms. Paech is a seasoned professional with over 25 years of experience in the public, private and non-profit sectors. She brings strong leadership and a proven track record in leading large-scale projects focused on health system change.

Early in her career, Ms. Paech held several senior administrative roles in Nursing and was Director of a Health Care Practice for a global consulting company. Ms Paech served as Associate Deputy Minister of Economic Development and Trade and Assistant Deputy Minister of Health and Long-Term Care in Ontario. In these roles she showed exemplary capacity for strategic leadership and was responsible for implementing several high-profile provincial initiatives. Most recently, she served as Chief Executive Officer of the Ontario Long-Term Care Association where she inspired positive changes through the development of a strategic plan aimed at achieving future growth and sustainability.

Between 1991 and 1998 she was the President and CEO of Toronto East General Hospital. Ms. Paech holds a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from the University of Ottawa and a Master of Science in Nursing from the University of Toronto. She has been an Assistant Professor in the Faculties of Nursing and Medicine at the University of Toronto.

Concurrent Speakers

Dr. Nancy Snobelen

Session Title: Registered Practical Nurses in Inpatient Rehabilitation Settings: A competency framework

Session Description: The Ontario inpatient rehabilitation model incorporates Registered Practical Nurses (RPNs) at bedside, however, these professionals are sometimes treated as incidental members of the interprofessional team. The purpose of this session is to analyze RPNs’ competencies specific to rehabilitation nursing. Defined as knowledge, skills, and intervention abilities, the competencies are examined in the context of the organization and expected clinical outcomes. Methodology: Four nursing leadership teams and 21 peer-nominated inpatient rehabilitation RPNs were interviewed. Deductive and inductive content analyses were performed based on an a priori rehabilitation process model adapted from Pryor’s research (2008). Informants ranged from 25 to 64 years of age and had, on average, 11 years of rehabilitation experience. Results: RPNs’ rehabilitation-specific knowledge revolved around settings, participants, and activities. Specialized skills were interpreting, consoling, conserving, and integrating. Intervention abilities included easing into rehabilitation, creating milieu, and maximizing patients’ efforts. Outcomes referenced disposition and assistance. Organizational environment variables of importance to RPNs’ work were model of care, role ambiguity, and changes to system and patient paradigms. Discussion: Passionate about their jobs, the RPNs involved in this competency modeling effort were challenged to reflect on the purpose, interventions, and practice of rehabilitation nursing. Individual responses varied by experience, training, tacit knowledge, and organizational context. Entry-to-practice competencies (CNO, 2014a; 2014b) do not sufficiently detail rehabilitation-specific competencies. Increasing encroachment of the biomedical model, compressed timelines, funding pressures, physical plant and practice variances affected the components of social milieu and skill integration. Conclusion: RPNs represent an important, underutilized and undertrained part of the inpatient rehabilitation workforce. This study outlines a robust competency framework that can be used to communicate about RPNs’ contributions to interprofessional teams and clinical outcomes. The framework can play a key role in refining a specialized role and a practical process of certifying rehabilitation RPNs.


Dr. Snobelen has over 32 years of experience in the Ontario healthcare system. She is a registered Speech-Language Pathologist. She holds an MBA and in 2016 completed her Doctor of Health Administration Program at Central Michigan University, Mount Pleasant, Michigan, USA. Nancy was formerly the Director of Regional Partnerships and System Integration at Chatham-Kent Health Alliance. She served as the co-chair of the Chatham-Kent Health Link Oversight Committee, the Erie-St. Clair Rehabilitation Network Rehabilitative Care Committee, and was a member on several other LHIN level advisory committees. Her passion is a responsive rehabilitation system of high quality care to ensure the best possible patient experience and outcomes; healthy, knowledgeable and respected staff experts; and financial viability and sustainability of Ontario’s health system. She co-authored this study with Dr. Svetlana Ivanitskaya, Dr. Lynn McCleary and Dr. Robert Teasell.

Tatiana Vavrova, RN, ROMHC, Lana MacDonald, RN, ROMHC, Ildiko Tanko, RPN, RAI-MDS Coordinator, Peter D. Clark Centre LTC

Session Title: From Computer to Practice. the Importanc of Capturingf BPSD in RAI-MDS

Session Description: Behavioral and psychological symptoms of dementia (BPSD), represent a mixed collection of non-cognitive symptoms and behaviors occurring in persons with dementia through the course of their illness. This term describe different features of changed behavior and their effects on persons living with dementia and their caregivers. It is estimated that 90% of persons with dementia will demonstrate BPSD at some point during the progression their disease. BPSD impacts on all aspects of the person’s life. It is at most importance to correctly capture these symptoms in the RAI-MDS process for the creation of the accurate care plan and care plan interventions. Non-pharmacological interventions have an important role in the management of BPSD. Effective management of BPSD can improve the quality of life of persons with dementia and their caregivers, reduce their distress, and decrease inappropriate use of medication. Direct care providers and family play a pivotal role in the success of non-pharmacological interventions in dementia care. They also need to understand the risk of pharmacological interventions and the benefits of attempting all possible non-pharmacological interventions first. RAI-MDS allows us to follow and validate the success of these approaches in the management of BPSD. This presentation explores this concept, implementation and the validation of this multidisciplinary approach. Keywords: Behavioral and psychological symptoms of dementia (BPSD), Individualized Plan of Care, Long Term Care (LTC), Non-Pharmacological Interventions, Person with Dementia, The Resident Assessment Instrument - Minimum Data Set (RAI-MDS)


Lana MacDonald RN has worked with The Royal since 1994, primarily with The Geriatric Program. Currently she works as a Behavioural Support Outreach Nurse to Long Term Care within the Champlain Local Health Integration Network (LHIN). She works collaboratively with the Long Term Care Homes to provide support to residents who present with mental illness and for residents who have dementia. Working closely with Outreach Psychiatrists, Long Term Care Staff, and Behavioural Supports Ontario Personal Support Workers she strives to assure that residents remain in their home, with the goal of decreased emergency department visits and admissions to Mental Health Care Units. Lana, in her role as an Outreach Nurse, provides education, and skill development for staff in the area of Mental Health and Dementia Care. In the last year she has had the opportunity to participate in Quality Improvement project which looked at the Reduction of Antipsychotic Use in Long Term Care. Lana is certified GPA Coach and provides training to LTC staff and students in the Greater Ottawa Area. Lana is actively involved on committees which promote the area of Gerontological Nursing, locally with the Greater Ottawa Area Gerontological Nursing Chapter, and as a part of the planning committee for the Canadian Gerontological Nursing Conference which is being held in Ottawa in 2017

Tatiana Vavrova RN, CPMHN (C), GNC (C) is a Behavioral Support Outreach Nurse with the Royal Ottawa Mental Health Care Group. She worked closely with Specialized Behavioral Support Unit at the Peter D. Clark Long Term Care Home in caring for clients living with dementia requiring intense behavior support needs until its closing in December 2016 and she will continue support their needs in a new location. She provides skill development and training for new and current staff consistent with their roles. In addition to working closely with geriatric psychiatrist, she assures that clients are able to stay in their preferred setting, that inappropriate transfers to emergency departments are reduced and that clients’ families are well supported. Tatiana is a certified GPA Coach and provides training with her colleagues to LTC staff in the Ottawa Region. Over the past two years Tatiana has shared her experiences with non-pharmacological approaches in dementia care at International Conferences in Bratislava, Slovakia and in Prague, Czech Republic.

Ildiko Tanko RPN, RAI-MDS Coordinator in Peter D. Clark Centre LTC in Ottawa. Coordinates the RAI process, educates nurses, PSW and all departments who code. Ensures coding accuracy. Extensive experience working on Dementia unit as RPN. Member of CGNO.

Mireille Cyr, Manager, Business Development & Planning, Mental Health First Aid Canada, Mental Health Commission of Canada

Session Title: Mental Health First Aid Seniors

Session Description: Background: Canada has an aging population. Per the 2016 Census, Canada’s seniors outnumber its children for the first time in history. By 2030, nearly one in four Canadians will be a senior. As Canadians age, they face different life challenges and need resources to maintain a mentally healthy life.

The Mental Health Commission of Canada (MHCC) championed the development of Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) Seniors, an adaptation of the MHFA Basic course that is intended to increase the capacity of seniors, families (informal caregivers), friends, staff in care settings and communities to promote mental health in seniors, prevent mental illness and suicide wherever possible in seniors and intervene early when problems first emerge. MHFA Seniors includes two additional sections not found in other MHFA adaptations: Dementia and Delirium.

The MHFA Seniors course is a worldwide first. It was piloted in 2016 and offered for the first time in Canada in 2017. Like the MHFA Basic course, MHFA Seniors participants report greater recognition of the most common mental health illnesses and problems, increased confidence in providing help to others and a demonstrated increase in help actually provided.

Learning objectives:

  1. Participants will gain awareness about the Mental Health Commission of Canada
  2. Participants will learn what mental health first aid is and how it is effective at work, home, and in their communities
  3. Participants will leave with a better understanding of some statistics related to mental health and the reality of mental health problems in Canada
  4. Participants will become more aware of issues related to stigma/ageism
  5. Participants will learn about the MHFA Seniors curriculum and how it addresses the unique needs of Canada’s population of seniors.
  6. Participants may leave the session with a desire to become a certified MHFAider for Seniors or may want to become an Instructor.


Mireille has worked at the Mental Health Commission since 2015 as Manager, Business Development and Planning for the Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) Program. She has been leading the development of the MHFA adaptation for the Veteran community and has been involved in the adaptations for seniors, First Nations and Inuit communities.

She brings over 20 years’ experience in the healthcare field, both as a frontline healthcare provider and in management. Her experience in private physiotherapy practice and in homecare have shown her the inter-relation of mental wellness on physical recovery.

Mireille has most recently worked at Accreditation Canada as a Manager Client Services supporting organisations through the accreditation process.

She is a Board Member of the Centre Psychosocial in Ottawa which is a French-speaking organisation whose mission is to provide quality mental health services to children aged 0-18 and important people in their lives.

Mireille holds a Master of Health Administration and a Bachelor of Physiotherapy from the University of Ottawa and is working towards a Human Resources certificate at Carleton University.



Alt Kimberly Miller | Program Lead: Education Services | Saint Elizabeth Health Care

Session Title: Person and Family Centred Care: Walk the Talk

Topic: In this interactive workshop, participants will develop a shared understanding of person and family-centered care (PFCC) and what it means for their role. We will discuss practical strategies for providing personalized care and effective, person-centered communication strategies when there are communication challenges, such as when working with people with dementia. Participants will learn about a variety of resources to assist with bringing PFCC to life in their organization.


Kim Miller has been employed within community health nursing for the past twenty years, the last nineteen of which have been spent employed at Saint Elizabeth. Kim completed both her undergraduate and graduate education at the University of Windsor, in Southwestern Ontario. Throughout her years at Saint Elizabeth, Kim has led multiple national clinical portfolios, including general medical, medications, and infusion therapy. Kim’s strengths lie with the development and advancement of these programs, including the development of internal education, resources and tools, creating associated policies and procedures, partnering with external organizations, project management, and quality monitoring and improvement initiatives. Her current role, Program Lead: Education Services includes developing and coordinating external educational services at Saint Elizabeth. Kim is a Past President of the Community Health Nurses Initiatives Group, an interest group of the Registered Nursing Association of Ontario. She is a past board member on both the Community Health Nurses of Canada and the Canadian Vascular Access Association.

Norma Tomlin, RPN | Professional Practice Team | RPNAO

Holly Byrne, RPN, BScN | Professional Practice Communications Coordinator | RPNAO

Session Title: Social Media: Driving Communication and Collaboration

Topic:mIf you’ve ever held back from engaging on social media because of fear, this is a call to action! Social media is a powerful tool for communication and connection; it enhances your practice and positively impacts patients. In leading by example as a social organization, RPNAO aims to empower nurses with the confidence to engage in social media without being afraid of compromising their professional accountabilities. Technology and the fast-paced culture of social media can be intimidating, but this session will focus on how you can feel poised to join the conversation and the community on social media. In this social media workshop for nurses, by nurses we will discuss social media basics, finding your voice, professional accountabilities, and more! We encourage every nurse to start a movement in their units and organizations, to engage and connect, and to be a social media champion. 

Norma has been an RPN for 25 years. Prior to joining the Professional Practice team at RPNAO, she started her career in private rehab clinics from there moving into the health service provider sector. There she had varies roles supporting the visiting nursing contracts with CCAC and the insurance/private care cases in the community. She also worked as a recruiter to hired PSWs, RPNs and RNs to support service delivery for a wide range of programs in the community. 
Moving into a case management role for many years, she helped families and patients navigate the health care system to support their desire to stay at home. From there, she was hired as a case manager for the CARE centre for Internationally Educated Nurses. Her work there counseled all levels of nurses to meet the entry to practice competencies out lined by the College of Nurses of Ontario. Over the almost 9 years in this role she highlighting the importance of our standards of practice to internationally educated nurses and engaging them with professional development. As a result of this work she, has supported several hundreds of nurses to become registered and working in all sectors to provide care for Ontario patient and their families.

Holly Byrne is an RPN and social media guru, certified in social media marketing as the Professional Practice Communications Coordinator at RPNAO. Holly graduated from Conestoga College in 2011 and completed her BScN at Ryerson University in 2016; she is a two-time RNFOO award recipient. Holly is recognized for her passion for nursing, her strength as an advocate, and her professional courage. Holly believes in nurses as knowledge professionals and is committed to innovation and creative solutions for removing barriers to enable best nursing practice, healthy work environments, and quality outcomes for patients.

Deanna Clatworthy, RPN | Clinic Coordinator and Nurse|HIV/AIDS Resources and Community Health 
Session Title: Transgender Healthcare for Nurses

An introduction to providing inclusive healthcare to transgender patients.  This workshop will cover appropriate language, use of pronouns, documentation, medications and some basic surgical information.  We will discuss the challenges that many transgender individuals struggle with to access healthcare and how you can make your nursing practice more trans-friendly. This knowledge is important for nurses who work in all areas of healthcare.  Increasing inclusivity helps our transgender patients to access the care they want and need.


Deanna Clatworthy is a registered practical nurse (RPN), public speaker and health educator. She is the Clinic Coordinator and Nurse at HIV/AIDS Resources and Community Health (ARCH Clinic) in Guelph, which cares for individuals who are living with or affected by HIV/AIDS. Transgender health services is a program offered at the ARCH Clinic and was developed and led by Deanna.  Deanna is on the Board of Directors for the Registered Practical Nursing Association of Ontario (RPNAO) and represents Region 2.

In addition to her work in community-based health care, Deanna is currently enrolled at McMaster University in the BScN program.  Deanna is a nursing graduate of Conestoga College and holds a diploma from McMaster University in Addictions Counselling. Deanna has also completed training with Rainbow Health Ontario in Transgender Healthcare and Sex Therapy from University of Guelph.

Deanna is passionate about teaching and presenting on topics regarding HIV/AIDS and is committed to reducing HIV Stigma in health care and removing barriers to enhance and better support the health of transgender persons. In addition to her nursing in these fields, she works as a gender-equity consultant and travels to teach transgender healthcare to healthcare professionals across Ontario.

Norma Tomlin, RPN | Professional Practice Team | RPNAO
Session Title: De-escalation the good, the bad, the ugly and your rights - Let’s talk about it

This workshop will introduce you to RPNAO’s new de-escalation interactive learning modules; part of our Workplace Violence Prevention toolkit. 

We will walk you through two de-escalation scenarios using a choose-your-own-adventure learning style! Practice your de-escalation strategies in managing a patient whose dementia has resulted in aggressive behaviour and see how your non-verbal and verbal communication affects conflict management with a patient in a mental health crisis.

Along with this, we will present tips and resources on what to do if, despite all your de-escalation efforts you find yourself on the receiving end of workplace violence or trauma. Who do you report to? What steps you should consider taking for yourself, both personally and professionally? RPNAO wants to empower you with resources that you can use should you ever need them.  

Norma has been an RPN for 25 years. Prior to joining the Professional Practice team at RPNAO, she started her career in private rehab clinics from there moving into the health service provider sector. There she had varies roles supporting the visiting nursing contracts with CCAC and the insurance/private care cases in the community. She also worked as a recruiter to hired PSWs, RPNs and RNs to support service delivery for a wide range of programs in the community. 
Moving into a case management role for many years, she helped families and patients navigate the health care system to support their desire to stay at home. From there, she was hired as a case manager for the CARE centre for Internationally Educated Nurses. Her work there counseled all levels of nurses to meet the entry to practice competencies out lined by the College of Nurses of Ontario. Over the almost 9 years in this role she highlighting the importance of our standards of practice to internationally educated nurses and engaging them with professional development. As a result of this work she, has supported several hundreds of nurses to become registered and working in all sectors to provide care for Ontario patient and their families.


Poster 1: The Missing Voice: RPNs in Acute Care Nursing Research

There is a growing number of RPNs working in acute care environments in Ontario, yet acute care nursing research rarely samples RPNs. In order to lead excellence in nursing in Ontario, it is paramount that this gap in the literature is addressed and innovative strategies are discussed to ensure RPNs are represented when research is used to make policy and practice changes. This presentation will discuss the results of an integrative review that sampled national and international acute care nursing research studies (n=964) to determine the frequency of RPN sampling in acute care research and which factors influence whether RPNs are sampled. Finally, this presentation will discuss the why the lack of RPNs in acute care research is a problem for the nursing profession and patients and will discuss ways to move forward.


Benjamin Hartung is a Registered Nurse and a Masters of Science in Nursing student at the University of Ottawa. He is studying new graduate nurses and dementia care in acute care. Throughout his studies, he was suspired to learn that the research available on the new graduate nurse transition and dementia care in acute care only sampled RNs. This sparked Ben’s interested in the sampling of RPNs in nursing research and confirmed his decision to include both RNs and RPNs in his nursing research.

Poster 2: RPN SCOPE ( Champlain - Saint Elizabeth)

I would like to showcase the role of RPNs in the community. We are truly optimizing the RPN role in community by allowing us to use our full scope. We have less restrictions in comparison to acute care. I would like my fellow RPNs to be aware of the capabilities and skills available in community. Here are some skills that I would like to showcase:

WOUND CARE -RPN - Simple cover wound dressing can performed in the absence of an order while waiting for an order but not direct another to perform -Able to initiate care plans NPWT ADMINISTRATION OF CYTOTOXIC AGENTS - Where care is focused on the delivery of chemotherapy via subcutaneous, oral, single medication by gravity infusion and continuous 5FU infusions by pump the educational requirements are Saint Elizabeth’s Chemotherapy Safe Handling and Administration education to be delivered by CPCs. This is for by both RN and RPNs. BANDAGE APPLICATION FOR COMPRESSION THERAPY PROCEDURE- RPN - May apply compression if possess the knowledge and skills to safely do so BLOOD COLLECTION FROM CVAD and CVAD INFUSION- Currently at Saint Elizabeth (SE), Registered Practical Nurses in Ontario (RPNs) are able to obtain competency with Peripherally Inserted Central Catheters (PICCs) and in some regions where funder contracts define (Champlain) competency with CVADS PARACENTESIS: IMPLANTED PERITONEAL ACCESSS AND DRAINAGE DEVICE - Applies to all nurses who have the knowledge, skill and judgment required to care for a client with an Implanted Peritoneal Access Device (IPAD). PLEURAL DRAINAGE TUBES- Applies to all nurses who have the knowledge, skill and judgment required to care for a client with a Tenckhoff drainage tube


Keshia Henry graduated from Saint Lawrence College in 2015. She completed her placement with Saint Elizabeth and was hired upon completion of her registering exam. She is a Clinic and Visit RPN currently working in the Barrhaven Clinic with Saint Elizabeth and completes home visits from time to time. She has also worked at the Ontario Addiction Treatment Center

Betty Fehr has a broad nursing background having worked in Acute Care, Psyco-geriatrics, Community Care and Legislative Nursing while holding leadership positions in these multiple settings. She helped pioneer the community care service in Saskatchewan by becoming the first RPN working as a front line nurse. Since then, Betty relocated to Ontario when she continues to work in Community Care with Saint Elizabeth in a supervisory capacity. She is a strong advocate for excellence in care and continues to strive to expand the RPN role.

Poster 3: Interprofessional Mobile Learning Team

Interprofessional education (IPE) occurs when “students from two or more professions learn with, from and about each other in order to enable effective collaboration and improve health outcomes” (World Health Organization, 2010, p. 7). While the value of interprofessional learning opportunities is well established in the literature, it can be a complex process to introduce, plan and sustain within the educational setting (Reeves, Goldman & Oandason, 2007). In our experience, it is easy to implement IPE activities focused on learning “about” each other, while learning “with and from” each other is often more difficult. The goal of our interprofessional team of students and staff was to design an innovative project that respected the numerous demands on time facing post-secondary students. Finding a way to make learning interesting in brief encounters, while supporting students in their quest for knowledge in the learning cycle of a busy semester, became the priority. The result was an Interprofessional Student Mobile Learning Team comprised of students from a number of our health programs. Using a small cart with promotional materials and information, students made rounds in lounge areas on campus to deliver 1 – 2 minute infomercials on the topic of the Fentanyl Patch for Patch Return Program (Legislative Assembly of Ontario, 2015). Feedback from participants and observers was overwhelmingly positive that the infomercial was a positive learning experiences and stimulated interest in IPE. This poster presentation will explore our experience with planning and implementing the Interprofessional Student Mobile Learning Team (MLT) project. Pictures and a short video of the MLT in action will demonstrate how this low cost, highly effective method to provide quick, interactive, interprofessional learning is easily adaptable to any setting.


Karen MacDonald is a professor in the Practical Nursing Program at Georgian College’s Barrie campus, and is passionate about nursing education, interprofessional education, and simulation.

Poster 4: Maximizing Utilization of Resources: Shared Learning through Simulations with PN and PTN Students

Abstract for Poster Presentation Safe delivery of healthcare depends on the coordinated efforts of a variety of healthcare professionals. Realizing the importance of Interprofessional Education and the positive impact it has on students, faculty, and health practitioners is the first step in providing integrated, safe, and effective patient care. The goal was to provide students from the Practical Nursing (PN) and Pharmacy Technician (PTN) Programs an opportunity to interact, understand, and appreciate one another’s role before launching into their new careers. Interprofessional team working skills play a vital role in expanding expertise (Koskinen & Aijo, 2013). This poster will describe the experience of shared learning enhanced through the power of simulation and shared resources. The key learning objectives are to outline strategies on how to create Interprofessional collaboration in the college environment and how to use available resources for a new learning experience. The presenters will also outline the students’ feedback on their perceived benefits of the experience. Reference Koskinen, L & Aijo, M. (2013). Development of an integrative practice placement model for students in health care. Nurse Education in Practice, 13, 442-448.


Lorie Ranieri Lorie has been Nursing Professor at Fanshawe College in London Ontario since 2005. She currently teaches in the clinical setting, the classroom, simulations and lab for the Practical Nursing Program. In her 30 + years as a nurse she has held various positions as a direct care provider and as an educator. She has taught in the RN (diploma) level and in RPN programs . She has worked as a paediatric and community nurse. Lorie has a BScN from Windsor University and a BEd from Queens University.

Ronna Hoglund is a Registered Pharmacy Technician who has been working in the healthcare field for over 30 years. She began teaching in 2005 after completing a Bachelor of Health Science degree with an honours specialization in rural health. During her career Ronna has experienced many changes that involved the use of new technologies both in the classroom and the workplace. This prompted her to pursue a master degree in educational technology. Ronna understands the need for interprofessional education for healthcare students. She is passionate about connecting her students with those in other programs to provide meaningful learning opportunities. Her interests outside of the classroom include spending time with her two grown children and enjoying nature through gardening, camping, and hiking along the bluffs of Lake Erie. Trained as a commercial helicopter pilot in the late 90s, Ronna now instead “flies” through the countryside of southwestern Ontario on her vintage motorcycle.

Poster 5: Role of CCAC APNs in improving Palliative Care in Central West Region

The last few weeks of patients with life limiting illness can be some of the most difficult weeks for them as well as for their loved ones and caregivers. When the health system performs well during this time, patients receive care that reflects their values and wishes so they can live with the highest quality of life possible and ultimately, die comfortably where they choose. Currently, we are not always achieving best-quality care. In surveys of patients and caregivers in Ontario, most people say they would prefer to die at home.[1,2] The reality, though, is that most patients in Ontario died in hospital, even among those who received palliative care. In Ontario, nearly two-thirds (62.7%) of the patients who received palliative care services between April 2014 and the end of March 2015 had unplanned emergency department visits in their last month of life. However, these percentage is higher in Central West region i.e. 64.8 % of palliative patients had unplanned ER visits in their last week of life. Palliative care is a holistic interdisciplinary approach to care; it seeks to relieve physical, psychosocial, and spiritual suffering associated with living with a progressive life-limiting illness. It is a philosophy of care and a secondary level of service that is far more than a series of end-of-life health and care interventions. That philosophy is patient-centered and culturally-competent; as such, it promotes autonomous decision making and respects patients’ values and preferences. Wherever possible, it is focused upon service provision in the home or home setting (residential hospice, retirement home, nursing home, etc.) rather than in hospitals. And consistent with this is hospitals’ work with the CCAC and other stake holders to discharge patients to their home to die if this is their desire. Too often, health care services for the palliative patients can be fragmented, uncoordinated and unevenly distributed across the region. For patients, that means they may have difficulty navigating the system or that they may not have equitable access to services. Too often our system is not delivering the right kind of care to patients who need it most. In order to overcome these challenges, Central west palliative care network have initiated a consultative palliative care model, built around Advanced Practice Nurses (APNs) and a shared care approach to community and hospital based outreach. This model have a favorable impact upon the use of ERs among palliative patients. This model is integrative in its operations across disciplines, it is intended to substantially develop the capacities of multi-disciplinary practitioners as well as directly provide consultation in relieving patients’ symptoms and help them meet their goal of care. Objectives of Presentation: To understand the role of APN and scope of practice of APNs i.e. CNS and NPs in community palliative care with in Central West region To discuss how APNs at Central West CCAC have assisted in achieving optimal symptom management and goals of care for palliative/EOL patients in Central west region. To examine role of APN in improving palliative care through capacity building among patients, their families/caregivers, nurses, physicians and allied health professionals.


Jehanara Chagani is an Advanced Practice Nurse with Central West CCAC. She has a Master of Science in Nursing and is a Certified Hospice Palliative Care Nurse. She is an experienced nurse with more than 15 years of nursing and teaching experience at various national and international health care settings and colleges. She has worked with CW CCAC as a Care Coordinator for a number of years. In her current role as APN at CCAC, she supports patients, families, nurses, physicians and other healthcare providers in optimizing hospice palliative care through capacity building, education, consultation, research and symptom management.

Svetlana Gadd has completed Advanced Nursing studies in Saskatchewan and worked as rural Nurse Practitioner providing primary and acute care. Lana had an opportunity to be a part of Health Quality Council Collaborative initiatives and was responsible for implementing Chronic Disease Management strategies and interventions related to Diabetes, CAD, Depression and COPD as well as involved in projects evaluation and future programs planning. She also had an opportunity to work with Regional Primary Care team and was involved in various community health promotion and disease prevention projects. Lana worked with WOHS NLOT team covering Central West LTC facilities providing urgent consultations including behavioural support to geriatric population. In her current role as Palliative Care Nurse Practitioner at Central West LHIN, she supports her patients by providing Advanced Pain and symptom management, end of life and bereavement care.

Trudy Mulder-Hall received her Bachelors of Nursing Science from Queen’s University in 1985. In 1985, she started her nursing career in orthopedics and cardiology before transitioning to Public Health (1987). Along with her Public Health role, she continued to be involved in hospital acute care (ICU and ER) and was a faculty advisor with Laurentian University’s School of Nursing Distance Education Program (1990-1993). In 1993, she became Home Care Case Manager in a rural community before moving to Brampton in 1997 to work at the CCAC. Trudy has had some role in palliative care throughout her career. She became a Palliative Care Case Manager in 2011 and is now an Advanced Practice Nurse in community palliative care. Trudy has completed a number of nursing speciality certifications over the years including orthopedic nursing (1986), cardiovascular nursing (1988), palliative care (1993), and case management (2001). She recently received her Canadian Hospice Palliative Care Certification through the Canadian Nurses Association (2015).

In her role as an Advanced Practice Nurse (APN) with Central West CCAC Palliative Care Program, Trudy helps connect people with life-threatening conditions and their caregivers to the services they need at end of life, supporting them to remain at home if possible. Trudy works in partnership with the physicians, nurse practitioners, nurses, care coordinators and other health care professionals to support and build capacity in palliative care and provide specialized palliative care to her patients and care givers. This is also done through education, leadership and research. Trudy has recently completed the IDEAS (Improving and Driving Excellence Across Sectors) Advanced Learning Program through Health Quality Ontario (HQO) and University of Toronto with a project on Early Identification of patients that can benefit from a palliative approach to care. Trudy is also the Central West LHIN lead for HPCO on Health Care Consent and Advance Care Planning.

Poster 6: Registered Nurses’ Foundation of Ontario

RNFOO is a charitable organization that provides financial support for nurses and nursing students in Ontario to help them further their educational studies, conduct nursing and health care research, and support community health initiatives.  The Foundation administers an annual awards process that distributes a significant amount of money ($83,000 in 2017) to students currently enrolled in nursing programs.  A number of these awards (up to $15,000 worth) are available to RPNs pursuing Bachelor level education.

The SARS-Rolling Stones Fund, administered by RNFOO, provides reimbursement funding to practicing health professionals currently employed in Ontario who undertake continuing education (course work or conference attendance) related to Infection Control and Prevention.

For information about making charitable donations, or applying for support, visit us at


Poster 7: An unacceptable reality: Enabling nursing knowledge for quality resident outcomes in Ontario’s Long Term Care Homes

Problem / Issue / Project Nurses in Long Term Care (LTC) struggle with increasingly complex resident care needs, resource constraints and challenging workloads, resulting in high degrees of moral distress and job dissatisfaction (Speneceley et al, 2014). The intensity of the workload results in nurses reporting inadequate time for ongoing assessment and updating resident care plans (Zuniga et al, 2015), thereby creating barriers to optimizing nursing specific knowledge in the planning and evaluation of resident care. Approach / Method This study involved a survey of RPNs and RNs in LTC homes located in five LHINs in Ontario. The aim of the study was to determine the enablers and barriers to optimal nursing knowledge utilization in the provision of resident care and the impact on nurse outcomes (e.g., moral distress and job satisfaction) and CIHI-reported resident outcomes (e.g. falls, pressure ulcers, restraint use, and changes in physical functioning) . Findings / Conclusions A total of 734 surveys (20% response rate) were completed. Results indicated high levels of moral distress, and low levels of organizational support. Despite this, there were high levels of team functioning and overall job satisfaction. The intensity of workload (e.g., medication and treatments) was the largest barrier for the provision of individualized resident care. Specific to resident outcomes, there was a statistically significant relationship between nurse-perceived quality of care and worsened residents’ physical condition (p = .010. Nurses play a key role in advocating for the organizational supports required to provide high quality, safe and individualized resident care. The issues of complex care needs, increased workload and the resulting moral distress experienced by nurses is not unique to LTC. These findings are applicable to a wide range of practice settings and sectors. 

Sara Lankshear RN, PhD a full time faculty with Georgian’s Collaborative BScN program with York University. Her areas of research interest include professional practice structures & roles, scope of practice, role clarity, and models of care delivery within intra and inter-professional teams. Sara was the co-author of the 2014 RPNAO report: It’s all about synergies: Understanding the role of the Registered Practical Nurse in Ontario’s healthcare system. Sara received her Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) at the University of Western Ontario where her research focused on professional practice leadership roles in health care and the impact of these roles on the practice environment.