Within the next few months, the Public Inquiry into the Safety and Security of Residents in the Long-Term Care Homes System will be entering into a new phase, as it begins its ‘public hearings’ process. As some of you may already be aware, RPNAO is one of a long list of organizations that will be participating in this public hearing element of the inquiry. It’s interesting, though, that in my travels over the past few weeks, a number of people I’ve spoken with have expressed curiosity and, in some cases, confusion, about why our association is taking an active role in this inquiry. More than a few people have posed the following question to me: “If Elizabeth Wettlaufer was an RN, why is RPNAO, the association that represents RPNs, getting involved in the inquiry?”

What I’ve been trying to explain to people is that RPNAO has an incredibly important role to play in this process. The category of nurse at the centre of this tragedy which led to the inquiry is really of little consequence in the grand scheme of things. In every way, this was a criminal act. An anomaly in the nursing world. Something that was incredibly rare.

However, all of us have a vested interest and, indeed, an obligation to work together to do whatever we can to understand what happened and to help make sure we can prevent something like this from ever happening again within the long-term care sector.

RPNs make up the majority of nurses in long-term care. As a result, we absolutely have a great deal to offer when it comes to sharing insights into nursing practices in a long-term care environment. In addition, RPNAO has recently conducted extensive research into how nurses apply nursing knowledge in the long-term care environment. This is some of the most current and comprehensive research that’s been done in this area and is yet another reason that RPNAO is well-positioned to make valuable, meaningful contributions to the inquiry.

We will continue to keep you up-to-date on our activities as we participate in the inquiry process over the coming months. Our goal is to provide the best information, insights and observations we can to help add value to this important inquiry. And, by doing so, we hope to contribute to the improvement of the long-term care sector in the province. 

 

Maxwell Hamlyn
President, BOD, RPNAO
mhamlyn@rpnao.org

 

 

 

Category: Messages from the PresidentDate: Thursday, March 29, 2018