On this page: Our journey | #WeAreNPs | Members leading change | RNAO's partnerships and engagements | RNAO policy | Capacity building | RNAO media

Our journey: Nurse Practitioners and RNAO

Nurse practitioners (NP) are positioned as global leaders of a new wave in health care that embraces the United Nations’ sustainable development goals and aims to advance an inclusive, equitable health and social system that leaves no one behind.

RNAO’s leadership and unwavering advocacy for NPs throughout the decades has positively influenced the role and aided in the integration of NPs across Ontario. The title of NP became a protected one in 2007. University programs with specialty streams were developed at the graduate level. These programs support NPs to practise across all sectors, including public health, primary care, home care, hospital care and long-term care. NPs have also increasingly engaged in independent practice with greater scope, caring for persons who range in age from a preterm infant to an elderly adult.  

RNAO's dynamic advocacy is powering NPs to work to full scope to address persistent health inequities and obstacles in accessing health care in Ontario.

RNAO's dynamic advocacy is powering NPs to work to full scope to address persistent health inequities and obstacles in accessing health care in Ontario.


Quadruple aim

#WeAreNPs social media campaign

We are nurse practitioners and we practise across all sectors in the health system. We are in people’s homes, community health centres and family health teams, outreach programs, NP-led clinics, hospitals and urgent care centres, long-term care and retirement homes, government, and academic and research settings.

We conduct comprehensive physical exams. We independently diagnose and treat illnesses. We order and interpret diagnostic tests, including X-rays, CT and MRI scans, ultrasounds and blood tests. We prescribe treatments and medication including controlled substances. We refer patients to specialists and are referred to by other health providers. We care for people with complex medical conditions. We provide high-quality care for individuals across their life spans.

We advocate for a more equitable and inclusive health-care system. We recognize the social determinants of health, such as income and housing, affect people’s health and wellbeing. We provide care to marginalized and vulnerable populations. We are autonomous practitioners who are experts in our field and are inspiring the next generation of NPs.

We are leaders, policy makers, mentors, educators and learners. We are compassionate, knowledgeable and always person-and family-centred.

#WeAreNPs. We can make a difference for all Ontarians. We can transform the health system.

Join the #WeAreNPs social media campaign to increase the public’s understanding of the vital role NPs play in Ontario’s health system. Download the image, add your fact or story about NPs (using a photo-editing tool, such as Paint, Photoshop or Canva) and share it on your social media platform of choice using “#WeAreNPs” using “#WeAreNPs” and tag @RNAO on X (formerly Twitter) or @registerednurses on Instagram. Or, create your own sign (or print this one in teal or this one in orange), snap a photo and/or video and share it. Remember to wear your NP pin in the photo as well. 

If you take a video, please share a few words on what being an NP means to you. We encourage all NPs to wear their NP pin – always – in the videos, at work and also when speaking with elected officials and reporters.

Read the media advisory to learn more about the campaign. 

#WeAreNPs IG teal


NOTE: To write your message, please download and open in your preferred design program: Canva, Paint, Photoshop, Illustrator.


This video below presents the value of the NP role in the different settings NPs work in, the importance of NPs to clients/patients and the continuous efforts of RNAO to promote the NP role

RNAO's Nurse Practitioner Task Force report: Vision for Tomorrow

Eight primary recommendations from the Vision for tomorrow:

1.    Increase the supply of NPs across all sectors and settings.
2.    Optimize the utilization of NPs within current scope of practice.
3.    Expand the scope of practice for NPs.
4.    Align NP curriculum with expanding scope of practice.
5.    Harmonize NP compensation across all sectors and settings.
6.    Invest in research to support NP practice and improved health outcomes.  
7.    Optimize access and continuity of care by ensuring all insurance benefit carriers, and other such payers, accept NP services analogous to physician counterparts.
8.    Showcase impact of NPs through public education campaigns to advance full utilization of NPs across all sectors and settings.


Members leading change 

Nurse Practitioner Interest Group (NPIG)

NPIG endeavours to strengthen the NP role in Ontario’s health-care system by supporting and representing action on behalf of NPs in collaboration with RNAO's board of directors. Visit NPIG's website.

NPIG logo

Become an RNAO member to join this interest group


Members mobilizing change

RNAO proposed resolutions 2023

Members can make their voices heard and help mobilize change by submitting resolutions to the association for consideration. 

Expand Nurse Practitioner (NP) Regulatory Authority under the Vital Statistics Act for Medical Certificate of Death (MCOD) Completion in All Circumstances

Advocating for NP scope of practice expansion to include regulatory authority under the Vital Statistics Act to support MCOD completion.

RNAO resolutions

RNAO resolutions 2022

Expand NP scope of practice to include authority to complete forms under the Mental Health Act

Advocating for NP scope of practice expansion to include the ability to initiate and complete all forms under the Mental Health Act.


RNAO's partnerships and engagements

Nurse practitioner mentorship program

Nurse Practitioner Mentorship Program 

RNAO works with NPIG to develop and manage a Nurse Practitioner Mentorship Program. The mentorship program enables novice NPs to transition into the work setting. 

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Palliative care

Palliative Care Facilitated Access (PCFA) program

The PCFA program allows eligible NPs to independently prescribe high-strength, long-acting opioids for those receiving palliative care services. RNAO is happy to process an application to the PCFA program for RNAO members and non-members. This initiative is in partnership with the Ministry of Health and Ministry of Long-Term Care.

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Take Your MPP to Work

Take Your MPP to Work (TYMTW)

TYMTW started as a celebration of Nursing Week and has been an annual event since 2000. TYMTW was conceived as an opportunity for registered nurses (RN), NPs, and nursing students to give on-the-job tours of their diverse workplaces to politicians.

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Recognition Awards

The RNAO Recognition Awards are presented annually to recognize individuals and groups that make significant contributions to RNAO's mandate of speaking out for nursing and speaking out for health. To honour these individuals and groups, consider nominating a colleague, yourself or your organization for one of RNAO's prestigious Recognition Awards.

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Nursing Now

Nursing Now Ontario Awards (NNOA)

"The awards honour nurses work in improving Ontarians' health and quality of life during the best and worst of times," says RNAO CEO Dr. Doris Grinspun. NNOA celebrates the contribution of nurses who improve the health outcomes of Ontarians and who contribute to nursing practice. Awards are presented to one winner in three categories: NP, RN, and RPN.

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RNAO policy

RNAO NP Position Statement
This document speaks to the history and aim of the NP role to provide accessible and equitable health care under the Quadruple Aim framework. This includes recommendations to enhance and sustain the NP role.
Urgent call for more NPs
Join our call for more NP-led clinics and attending NPs in long-term care.
Vision for Tomorrow: Fact sheet
This fact sheet provides a select history of the NP role and RNAO’s leading advocacy.

Capacity building

RNAO works with NPIG and other Ontario NPs to move the role forward: increase NP supply, optimize utilization, expand scope, harmonize NP compensation upward and align curriculum. The following conferences and webinars speak to these issues and more.

RNAO media

Shannon Clausen

The Trillium

Shannon Clausen, a nurse practitioner, pressured Health Minister Sylvia Jones to acknowledge that primary care is in crisis and green-light new publicly funded clinics to solve it at RNAO's Queen's Park Day. "I want to follow up with that and just say that people are already afraid to go emerge because of how long they have to wait in emerge because the emerges are overwhelmed and understaffed. And so, it is already a crisis."

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Brandi Tapp

CBC News

Nurse practitioner Brandi Tapp is part of a team that provides mobile frontline care for Londoners who are unhoused. Tapp spoke to CBC News about Londoners experiencing skin conditions that can lead to infections requiring amputation. "It's beyond belief. In a well-resourced country one would hope this wouldn't be as commonly occurring as it is."

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Mariah Zalitach

The Mid-North Monitor 

Mariah Zalitach, a nurse practitioner at St. Josephs Hospital in London told CBC News that long COVID "patients struggle a lot with their mental health, because their families, their friends, their employers – even medical professionals outside of our clinic – still don’t have an in-depth understanding of how profound this condition can be on their lives...It’s real. I don’t think the general public thinks it’s a real condition yet."

Read more

Social media

Get involved. Use the following hashtags on X (formerly Twitter), Facebook and Instagram to participate in the ongoing dialogue: #NP #NursePractitioner #WeAreNPs

Tweet URL
Tweet URL

RNAO staff leading change

RNAO staff work tiredlessly with NPIG members to mobilize the Vision for Tomorrow recommendations during presentations and discussion during our two annual conferences: NP Knowledge Exchange Symposium and the NP Institute.

NP staff photo

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