Registed Nurses' Association of Ontario


Nurses bring their voices to Queen’s Park

More than 130 RNs, NPs and nursing students spoke out for nursing and health care at RNAO’s 20th Queen’s Park Day on Feb. 20, 2020. 

Premier Doug Ford dropped by the morning breakfast meetings and addressed members. Ford expressed admiration for the work of nurses and praised RNAO for its work on behalf of the profession and the health of Ontarians.   

Engaging with 38 MPPs across the province during breakfast meetings, nurses discussed the need for investing in harm reduction services to deal with the opioid crisis and a better approach to long-term care funding in Ontario. 

Currently, five Ontarians die each day from accidental opioid overdose due to a poisoned drug supply, over-prescribing and promoting opioids with misleading information. RNAO is calling on the government to move faster and invest more in harm reduction services such as supervised consumption sites and ensuring that every community that needs these essential services has access to them.  

Systemic issues in long-term care are also affecting how care is delivered. Staffing in long-term care homes is made up of only 11 per cent RNs and NPs, which makes it challenging  to deal with a rise in resident complexity (e.g. 90 per cent of residents have some form of cognitive deterioration, including dementia). RNAO urges changes to staffing ratios so that 20 per cent of staff is made up of RNs, 25 per cent are RPNs and no more than 55 per cent are PSWs. RNAO also wants to see one NP for every 120 residents.  Also critical is a change in the funding formula so homes do not lose funding when the health of their residents improves as a result of evidence-based practices. For more information about our calls to action, please read our Fact Sheets below. 

During the afternoon session at the University of Toronto’s at the Hart House, Health Minister Christine Elliott, NDP health critic France Gélinas, interim Liberal Party leader John Fraser and Green Party leader Mike Schreiner each had a 30-minute chance to address members and answered questions. 

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