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Canadian Nurses Association granted prestigious research fellowship to enhance nurses’ role in opioid stewardship

Ottawa, October 2, 2017 — The Canadian Nurses Association (CNA) today welcomes the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) announcement of Canadian Health System Impact Fellowship recipients. We are excited that Chantelle Bailey, M.Sc., PhD, will join CNA for the coming two years as a research fellow on this timely new project: Enhancing Nurses’ Role in Opioid Stewardship. This prestigious award is jointly supported byCIHR, Mitacs and CNA.

While regional and national strategies are being developed and implemented to address the expanding opioid crisis, Canadians continue to have the world’s second highest rate of prescription opioid use. Despite this consumption level, the concept of opioid stewardship remains ill-defined, and nurses’ roles in promoting safe prescribing are still underutilized — even though these programs have shown positive results in harm reduction and patient outcomes.

“The opioid crisis is devastating communities, taxing first responders and health-care facilities across the country,” said CNA president Barb Shellian. “Every day in Canada, nurses are working hard to support patients with opioid addictions. Today’s announcement is therefore a critical step forward: it will enhance nursing knowledge and practice while supporting the best care for patients with complex health and social needs.”

CNA has long advocated that registered nurses (RNs) and nurse practitioners (NPs) be given appropriate prescribing privileges. Now that RN and NP prescribing is a reality, this research will support the development an opioid stewardship framework for nurses, so they can bring their policy and practice leadership to bear on helping resolve the opioid crisis.

“Today’s CIHR announcement opens important doors for policy research,” said CNA CEO Mike Villeneuve. “This fellowship will further expand CNA’s research capacity and help us bring evidence-based prescribing expertise to nurses across the country. The creation of an opioid stewardship framework will be a critical component in supporting the broader interprofessional health-care community delivering care to Canadians.”

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The Canadian Nurses Association is the national professional voice representing over 139,000 registered nurses and nurse practitioners in Canada. CNA advances the practice and profession of nursing to improve health outcomes and strengthen Canada’s publicly funded, not-for-profit health system.

For more information, please contact:
Kevin Ménard
Communications Advisor
Canadian Nurses Association
Cell: 613-266-8230
E-mail: kmenard@cna-aiic.ca