July 5, 2023 — Today is the last day of the 2023 International Council of Nurses (ICN) Congress, hosted by the Canadian Nurses Association (CNA). Over 6,200 Canadian and international participants witnessed the numerous ways nurses can stay true to this year’s theme, Nurses together: a force for global health. While it applies abroad, the theme also speaks to the ability of nursing leaders to shape Canadian health policy and address the challenges of our health-care system.
In his remarks to participants at the ICN Congress, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau noted several Canadian nurses are working closely with international colleagues, notably to better prepare Canada for future pandemics. Other nurses are serving abroad, to improve patients’ well-being, including in conflict zones or where natural disasters strike.
“As the world faces critical nursing shortages, health leaders must recognize that Canada has to become self-sufficient for its domestic supply of nurses and stay true to the ethical recruitment of internationally educated nurses,” said CNA president Sylvain Brousseau.
Canada’s decentralized approach to health care requires involving nurses in its policy-making process, notably through the recently reinstated chief nursing officer of Canada role, to fully integrate nurses’ expertise, knowledge, and on-the-ground experience with patient care. “To support the sustainability of Canada’s health-care system, it is time to improve the working conditions and mental health of our nurses. This is necessary to solve the health human resources crisis; doing so is in the best interest of all Canadians,” said Brousseau.
About the Canadian Nurses Association
CNA is the national and global professional voice of Canadian nursing. Our mission is to advance the nursing profession to improve health outcomes in Canada’s publicly funded, not-for-profit health system. CNA is the only national association that speaks for all types of nurses across all 13 provinces and territories. We represent nurses that are unionized and non-unionized, retired nurses, nursing students, and all categories of nurses (registered nurses, nurse practitioners, licensed and registered practical nurses, and registered psychiatric nurses).
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