As we prepare to turn the page on another year, I wanted to take this opportunity to share a few  thoughts with you, my fellow nursing colleagues around the province. What changes would you like  to see in Ontario’s health care system in 2016?  

 First, I’d like to extend a heartfelt thanks to those of you who were able to attend RPNAO’s AGM &  Conference in London in October.

As you know, ours is a profession where long hours and unpredictable shifts are the norm. As such, I know how difficult it can be to schedule time to attend events like this, particularly when they involve travel. But what a great event it was. I truly believe that this conference gets better every year and that is a reflection of the staff at RPNAO, who dedicate so much time ensuring every last detail is attended to.

In speaking with other attendees, there were so many positive comments about the high quality of the keynote speakers, the concurrent sessions, the workshops, the awards gala and more. If you’ve never attended RPNAO’s AGM & Conference or if it’s been years since you’ve attended, it’s a professional development and educational event you should really try to put on your calendar for 2016. I guarantee that you won’t be disappointed!

In addition to being a wonderful time to reflect on our lives, our families and our careers, the dawn of a new year is also an ideal time to reflect on our health care system here in Ontario and the improvements we’d like to see (and help make a reality) going forward. Well? What changes would you like to see take place in Ontario’s health care system in 2016? My wish would be for health care organizations around the province to make ‘collaboration’ a higher priority. Our research demonstrates clearly that when you have health care teams that are truly collaborative, everyone benefits - the patients/residents/clients as well as the team members. When team members are encouraged to work to full scope of practice and when they genuinely respect one another, regardless of their roles, amazing things can happen.

On a slightly related note, I also wanted to let you know that while attending HealthAchieve (the annual conference of the Ontario Hospital Association) in early November, I did get a brief opportunity to chat with Minister Hoskins. I took that opportunity to reinforce with him that RPNs are positive collaborators and that we advocate for quality health care for our patients/clients/residents every day.

While the road ahead will surely include challenges and change, I know that RPNs will continue to be part of the solution. And I can assure you that RPNAO will continue to support RPN professionalism every step of the day.

I’d like to wish every one of you and your families all the best for 2016 and I truly hope that this coming year is one of happiness and good health for each of you.


Anne McKenzie
President, RPNAO


Category: Messages from the PresidentDate: Wednesday, December 16, 2015