Registed Nurses' Association of Ontario


Ontario needs more RNs

How can the provincial government end hallway nursing?

Ontario lags other provinces when it comes to the ratio of RNs providing care, with just 669 RNs per 100,000 people compared with an average of 828 RNs inthe rest of Canada. In fact, Ontario has the lowest RN-to-population ratio in the country. We must rebalance the nursing workforce to improve outcomes andsafety for patients.  The research is clear – when RNs provide care in hospitals, there are fewer readmissions and patients have fewer complications such as falls,infections, pneumonia, cardiac arrests, medication errors and pressure ulcers. More RNs reduce the number of patients and their length of stays, so that those who need hospital care aren't stranded on gurneys in a hallway.

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To end hallway nursing, RNAO wants to work with the government to:

Direct hospitals to immediately post and fill the 10,000 RN vacancies in hospitals.

This will narrow the deficit in Ontario's RN workforce and better serve patients. The evidence is clear: RNs save money and lives. Vacant positions leave patients without access to the expert care of RNs and vulnerable to increased risks of complications and death.



All new nursing hires in acute care and cancer care hospitals should be RNs.

Most patients in acute care and cancer care hospitals have complex needs that require the expert knowledge, competencies, and judgment of RNs. Overwhelming evidence demonstrates RNs reduce mortality while increasing quality of care and organizational safety.



All first home care assessments should be conducted by an RN

Ontario should designate RNs to conduct all first home care assessments to reduce the rate of hospital readmission.

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