A course every nurse should take: Indigenous Cultural Competency

The establishment of the First Nations Health Authority, the work of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission and most recently, the appointment of two indigenous MPs to the federal cabinet, are all examples of efforts to acknowledge the history of colonization in this country and collaborate with Aboriginal leadership to address its legacy. However, amongst this progress a hard truth remains: statistically significant health disparities exist for aboriginal people both here in BC and across Canada. As a nurse, you have the power to help make a change. In fact, CRNBC’s entry-level RN competencies require nurses to consider how their practice can help achieve positive health outcomes for Aboriginal Peoples. Your actions are key to the promotion and delivery of culturally safe, appropriate and ethical care to aboriginal peoples. The first step is awareness, and that’s where the Indigenous Cultural Competency […]

Playing pretend has real consequences

There are 26 regulated health professions in British Columbia. Can you name them all? If not, you’re not alone. Many people are surprised to hear that over 100,000 health professionals are regulated in our province. The Colleges responsible for regulating these diverse health professionals play a critical role in protecting the public and ensuring safe, competent care. It’s important that we build awareness about regulated professionals amongst British Columbians so they can choose their health providers carefully, and know that help is available if standards aren’t met. This can be important for Canada’s new immigrant community, who, in some cases, may not have had experience with professions that are regulated in their countries of origin. That’s why I’m excited about the BC Health Regulators’ new public awareness campaign, “Saying you are one doesn’t make you one.” Using humour, the video campaign features children […]

Fentanyl and opioid overdoses: Can responsive regulation help save lives?

It all started with a discussion in late 2013 between the College, the B.C. Centre for Disease Control (BCCDC), the Provincial Health Services Authority (PHSA) Professional Practice Office and others involved in harm reduction. How could we work together to tackle the troubling reality that a considerable number of people continue to die of opioid drug overdoses in British Columbia? Many opioid overdoses are preventable through the administration of naloxone. This medication, also known by the trade name Narcan, reverses the effects of an overdose from opioids such as heroin, methadone, morphine and even fentanyl. At the College we understand that health professionals, including registered nurses, are an important lifeline and resource for people at risk for drug overdoses. In some cases, a registered nurse is their first point of contact for health concerns and information. To help […]

Longest way round is the shortest way home

When it comes to good healthcare, what do your family and friends need? What do our loved ones, who require care, truly need from BC’s healthcare system? Those were the questions Minister Terry Lake asked of participants taking part in a recent forum about the Ministry of Health’s policy papers and how to turn good ideas into action. If home is where the heart is, then perhaps there is no better way to start a conversation about community and health care than by thinking about our loved ones. The minister encouraged us to take off our industry “hat” and think about our role as members of a community who want to meet the needs of those we care about. CRNBC was asked to join this discussion and share our perspective as a regulating body for nurses. The session was excellent. It brought forward ideas about […]

Understanding the organizations that support nursing

The Association of Registered Nurses of BC (ARNBC) posted an open letter to nurses May 1, 2015 about a lawsuit filed by the British Columbia Nurses Union (BCNU). I feel it would be helpful to provide a short history of the association, regulator and labour union in B.C. It is correct, BCNU is suing me, the College, the Association, and its president over the transfer of funds from the College to the Association. The nursing profession’s history in this province provides context for the current situation, and also allows us to differentiate and value each organization’s role. Today, in 2015, as it should be, the regulatory, labour and association functions for nurses in B.C. are separate. Both the union (in 1981) and the association (in 2013) received funding to help them on their way. Three organizations, three distinct roles, […]