Registed Nurses' Association of Ontario


Nurses celebrate excellence in health care


TORONTO, March 23, 2011 – One hundred and fifty nurse leaders representing 50 health-care organizations gather today in Toronto to share their expertise in improving the quality of patient care. The meeting, organized by the Registered Nurses’ Association of Ontario (RNAO), includes representatives from all sectors and regions of the province  as well as some from Quebec, that have implemented the association’s nursing best practice guidelines (BPG).

The guidelines are evidence-based tools nurses use in their everyday practice to ensure the best patient outcomes. Forty-two BPGs have been developed to date, including ones focused on wound care, falls prevention, and pain management.  Guidelines have also been developed in the area of chronic disease management such as diabetes and to support nurses working with patients who are ill with various conditions, such as hypertension and asthma.

“This is a celebration of excellence because these organizations have taken our guidelines and implemented them in various settings to improve patient care,” says Irmajean Bajnok, Director of RNAO’s BPG Program, adding that these evidence-based tools are maximizing nurses’ contributions to care delivery, improving their clinical outcomes and advancing system effectiveness, by bringing the most relevant evidence to the point of care.”

“This is a proud day for our nursing community,” says RNAO’s Executive Director Doris Grinspun, who launched RNAO’s program in 1999. “We are very fortunate to count on the government’s support so we can develop and help implement best practices. We’re also inspired by the commitment nurses and their organizations show to adopt these guidelines,” she states, adding that the program has placed nurses in a leadership position at a time when new legislation, The Excellent Care for All Act puts the lens on quality by emphasizing evidence-based practices in a way never seen before.

The day-long meeting will include a visit from Health Minister Deb Matthews, who will talk about the role evidence-based practice will play in light of the government’s legislation.

•The Honourable Deb Matthews, Minister of Health and Long-Term Care
•Doris Grinspun, Executive Director, Registered Nurses’ Association of Ontario
•Irmajean Bajnok, Director, International Affairs and Best Practice Guidelines Programs (RNAO)
•150 representatives from 50 health-care  organizations

•RNAO Best Practice Spotlight Organization Knowledge Exchange Symposium

•Wednesday, March 23, 2011, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
(*Minister Matthews will speak at 2:30 p.m.)

•The Hyatt Regency Hotel, 370 King St., Street West, Toronto (Regency B & C Ballroom)

RNAO’s ambitious Best Practice Guidelines Program is funded by the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, and was launched in 1999 to provide the best available evidence for patient care across a wide spectrum of health-care areas. The 42 guidelines developed to date are a substantive contribution towards building excellence in Ontario’s health-care system. They are available to nurses and other health care professionals across Canada and abroad. To learn more about RNAO’s Nursing Best Guidelines Program or to view these resources, please visit

The Registered Nurses’ Association of Ontario is the professional association representing registered nurses in Ontario. Since 1925, RNAO has advocated for healthy public policy, promoted excellence in nursing practice, increased nurses’ contribution to shaping the health-care system, and influenced decisions that affect nurses and the public they serve.

For more information about RNAO, visit our website at You can also check out our Facebook page at and follow us on Twitter at


To arrange an interview with a nurse or for more information, please contact:

Marion Zych, Director of Communications, RNAO
Cell: 647-406-5605 / Phone: 416-408-5605
Toll free: 1-800-268-7199 ext. 209