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Canadian Nurses Association Presents 2009 Certification Employer Recognition Award in Support of Continuing Education for Registered Nurses – News Release

Jewish Eldercare Centre Staff
Jewish Eldercare Centre staff. ACCESS article.

May 14, 2009, Ottawa – The Canadian Nurses Association (CNA) 2009 Certification Employer Recognition Award was presented to CHSLD juif de Montréal/Jewish Eldercare Centre for its support of registered nurses in pursuing continuous education opportunities through the CNA Certification Program.

The certification credential is an important indicator to patients, employers, professional licensing bodies and the public that a nurse is qualified, competent and current in a nursing specialty or area of nursing practice. According to Kaaren Neufeld, president of CNA, “Nurses truly appreciate the support their employers provide to enable them to achieve this important designation.”

Through this voluntary program, CNA offers certification in English and French in 19 specialties and/or areas of nursing practice, including community health, critical care, emergency and gerontology. Medical-surgical nursing will be new to the program in 2010.

Currently, there are over 15,000 CNA-certified nurses in Canada. Close to 3,000 Canadian nurses are newly certified or renew their CNA certification credentials each year.

CHSLD juif de Montréal/Jewish Eldercare Centre is the second-largest public Jewish long-term care centre in the Province of Quebec. For nearly 100 years, the Centre and its founding organizations have been caring for the chronically ill and elderly in a homelike environment and according to Jewish tradition and values.

The Centre receives $1,000 from the Canadian Nurses Foundation (CNF) to help support ongoing activities related to CNA certification. Supported by CNA, the Foundation advances nursing knowledge and improves health care by providing research grants, awards and scholarships to Canadian nurses and nursing students.

The Centre’s outstanding commitment to certification and to its registered nurses sets it apart. Its certification awareness campaign, which starts in August, encourages nurses to pursue CNA certification through funding the costs of certification exams and providing full pay for exam day, offering a two-day workshop for exam preparation and purchasing study materials. The Centre also compensates CNA-certified nurses for mentoring new applicants for certification. Bursaries are awarded to promote continuing education via the Jewish Eldercare Geriatric Centre and Foundation nursing scholarships. During the last year, over $10,000 in nursing bursaries was awarded.

An Honourable Mention for the 2009 CNA Employer Recognition Award was given to Alberta Health Services, Calgary, Alberta, for its outstanding support of the entire group of Clinical Nurse Specialists in obtaining CNA certification, and for mentoring the palliative care RNs in the region to do the same. Nurses are fully compensated for the initial certification and for certification renewal, and are financially supported for CNA certification exam development activities.

Through the Employer Recognition Program Award for Innovation, CNA also recognizes employer innovation in health-care facilities that provide unique incentives or out-of-the-ordinary tools in support of nurses pursuing specialty certification. There were three recipients in 2009:

  1. North Perth Family Health Team
    North Perth Family Health Team
    North Perth Family Health Team, Perth, Ontario. This dedicated team was recognized for the achievement of attaining certification by nurses working within a small interdisciplinary team setting, recognizing the importance of certification within hiring policies, and providing financial support and paid leave for CNA-certified nurses during their continuous learning activities toward renewal.
  2. Northumberland Hills Hospital, Cobourg, Ontario. This organization’s innovation activities toward obtaining CNA certification included supporting emergency department nurses in life-long learning activities, and providing exam preparation material, study groups and a flexible rotation schedule. This made all the difference in the nurses’ ability to prepare for certification and write the exam.
  3. Prince Albert Parkland Health Region, Prince Albert, Saskatchewan. Innovation activities by this organization included immediate response by senior management in supporting nurses’ goals to earn certification, fully funding exam fees, and providing office space with Internet access for research purposes and phones to enable the nurses to conduct teleconferences with their rural counterparts who were also preparing for the certification exam. This support created an ideal environment for the nurses to be able to prepare for their CNA certification.

For more information on CNA’s Certification Program, visit: http://getcertified.cna-aiic.ca.

For more information on the Canadian Nurses Foundation, visit www.cnf-fiic.ca.

Paul Watson
Communications Coordinator
Canadian Nurses Association
Tel.: 613-237-2133 ext. 283
E-mail: media@cna-aiic.ca