Primary care is a person’s first encounter with a health professional. And yet, many Canadians do not have access to a primary care provider. We know we can do better. That’s why we think the role of registered nurses (RNs) should be expanded so they can do what nurses in other countries are already doing, such as diagnosing and treating minor illnesses and prescribing medications. This will free up doctors and nurse practitioners (NP) to look after people with more complex needs.
The Ontario government changes regulations to enable RNs to order diagnostic tests, diagnose common ailments, and prescribe medications.
Case managers working in Community Care Access Centres (CCAC) transition to primary care to work as care co-ordinators for people with complex health needs, helping to avert unnecessary hospitalizations.
RNs complete the required education to prescribe medications.
RNs focus on health promotion and provide comprehensive primary care within their expanded scope of practice. This includes: identifying and treating minor illnesses such as ear and bladder infections, managing chronic diseases, and co-ordinating care and other support services.
All Ontarians have same-day access to person-centred, interprofessional teams in nurse practitioner-led clinics, community health centres, Aboriginal health access centres, and family health teams.
Nurse practitioner-led clinics, community health centres, Aboriginal health access centres, and family health teams provide health services 24/7, rotating in their responsibility for after hours care.
Stand-alone walk-in clinics are phased out.