Today, the Ontario Government announced it would invest $35 million to boost enrollment in nursing education programs for Fall 2021 and Winter 2022 cohorts in publicly-assisted colleges and universities across the province. In response, WeRPN issued the following statement:
The Registered Practical Nurses Association of Ontario (WeRPN) applauds the government’s investment to grow the supply of nurses in Ontario’s health system at a time when they are urgently needed.
The proposed funding will open new spaces for nurses in Fall 2021 and Winter 2022 and promises to add approximately 1,130 new practical nurses and 870 registered nurses into the health care system.
In the coming years, the nursing shortage is expected to worsen. Investments like this are a step the right direction to begin to help address existing gaps and strengthen Ontario’s nursing workforce to meet future challenges. In addition to these crutial recruitment efforts, it will be equally important to put in place measures to support the retention of nurses currently working in the health system.
“The pandemic has put additional stress on Ontario’s healthcare system and exposed the devastating impacts of staffing shortage,” said Dianne Martin, CEO, WeRPN. “The government’s proposed investment will help ease some of the pressures across the health system and ensure that nurses are able to provide the level of care Ontarians need and deserve.”
WeRPN looks forward to working with government on the implementation of this proposed policy.