Registed Nurses' Association of Ontario


RNAO Annual General Meeting (AGM)


TORONTO, April 25, 2012 – The gains nurses have made in their profession and their impact on patient care will be the focus of a meeting of more than 700 registered nurses (RNs) in Toronto this week.

“Registered nurses have much to be proud of,” says David McNeil, President of the Registered Nurses’ Association of Ontario (RNAO). “They have consistently demonstrated they are the greatest engine to ensure the sustainability of our health-care system and their knowledge base puts them at the forefront of driving the government’s quality care agenda.”

McNeil says an example of that will be celebrated during the association’s annual gathering when 14 health-care organizations are officially designated Thursday as members of RNAO’s esteemed Best Practice Spotlight Organization program.

The organizations have successfully implemented RNAO’s internationally acclaimed clinical best practice guidelines. They include: CanCare Health Services Inc.; Care Partners; Fairview Mennonite Homes; Grand River Hospital; Guelph General Hospital; Hamilton Niagara Haldimand Brant Local Health Integration Network; Holland Bloorview Kids Rehab; Montfort Hospital; St. Michael’s Hospital; Thunder Bay District Health Unit; Toronto Public Health; Trent University; Windsor Essex Community Health Centre; and York Central Hospital.

“These health-care organizations join 250 other sites committed to a practice of nursing that is based on the most robust research evidence,” says Doris Grinspun, RNAO’s Chief Executive Officer, adding that by utilizing RNAO’s guidelines, “nurses elevate patient care to a higher level of excellence - assuring patients, organizations and the health system of optimal outcomes.”

The three-day meeting, which marks the association’s 87th anniversary, will also feature speeches by Premier Dalton McGuinty, Health Minister Deb Matthews, NDP leader Andrea Horwath, and PC Health Critic Elizabeth Witmer.

RNAO’s Annual General Meeting begins Thursday evening, April 26, and continues to Saturday, April 28 at the Toronto Hilton, 145 Richmond Street West in Toronto, Ontario.

Highlights include:

Thursday, April 26, 7:00 – 9:00 p.m.

• Opening ceremonies featuring speeches by The Hon. Deb Matthews, Minister of Health and Long-Term Care; NDP Leader Andrea Horwath; and Elizabeth Witmer, PC Health Critic
• Address by David Benton, President of the International Council of Nurses
• Remarks by Judith Shamian, President of the Canadian Nurses Association
• RNAO’s Best Practice Spotlight Organization (BPSO) Ceremony

Friday, April 27, 8:30 a.m. – 9:00 p.m.

• Report from Doris Grinspun, CEO of RNAO
• Announcement of Dr. Joan Lesmond Memorial Scholarship
• Speech by Incoming President, Rhonda Seidman-Carlson
• Presentation of RNAO Recognition Awards (throughout the day)
• Presentation of Awards for Excellence in Health-Care Reporting, 8:00 p.m.

See a complete list of the Nursing Recognition Award Winners and Media Award Winners.

Saturday, April 28, 11:30 a.m.:

• “Advocacy in Difficult Times: Opportunities and Challenges for Nurses”
A panel discussion featuring: Barb Mildon, President-Elect of the Canadian Nurses Association; Mae Katt, Thunder Bay Nurse Practitioner who works with Aboriginal Youth; Nicholas Tsergas, Occupy Toronto; and RNAO CEO Doris Grinspun.

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


For more information or to arrange an interview, please contact:

Marion Zych
Director of Communications
416-408-5605 (office)
647-406-5605 (cellular)

Melissa Di Costanzo
Writer/Communications Officer
416-408-5606 (office)
647-222-6942 (cellular)

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