Building Strength of Health Care Teams
HHR planning is as an essential factor in the delivery of critical care services.
Designed to create accessible critical care nurse training, ensure the development of quality work environments and ensure a sustainable critical care nursing workforce.
The Ontario Critical Care Workforce Advisory Committee (OCCWAC)
The Ontario Critical Care Workforce Advisory Committee is an advisory body, focused on identifying and addressing system level issues pertaining to critical care health human resources (HHR) within Ontario. This group focuses on HHR priorities relating to recruitment and retention, including, training, wellness, models of care, practice standards and other processes that enable the critical care workforce. Comprised of Hospital CNEs representing the 5 Ontario Regions, with a focus on inter-professional teams and critical care directors ensuring representation from adult, paediatrics, community, and academic centres.
- Critical Care Nursing Standards: The Practice Standards for Critical Care Nursing in Ontario identify desirable and achievable critical care nursing knowledge and competencies, in an effort to standardize critical care nursing practice across hospitals.
Critical Care Nursing Workforce Profile (CCWP)
The Critical Care Workforce Profile collects and analyzes data on the critical care workforce, including nursing and allied health professionals. A biennial report provides comprehensive data on critical care nurse demographics, workforce utilization, and recruitment and retention indicators and allied health resourcing ratios.
- The 2020 Recruitment & Retention Provincial Report focuses primarily on the impact of COVID-19 on the recruitment, retention, staffing practices, and supports to critical care nursing and allied health professionals in Ontario Critical Care Units. In addition to the Recruitment and Retention Survey, CCSO utilized the 2022/23 Critical Care Nurse Training Fund (CCNTF) application process to gain a point in time understanding of the current state of the Health Human Resources in Ontario’s critical care units.
Critical Care Nurse Training Fund (CCNTF)
The annual Critical Care Nurse Training Fund is an initiative designed to support hospitals with the costs of training adult and paediatric critical care nurses to the provincially recognized critical care nurse training standards for each fiscal year since 2006/2007. Since 2006/07, over 6,000 critical care nurses in the province have received critical care training support. In 2020/2021, the fund was expanded to include neonatal intensive care nurses.
Recruitment & Retention
Critical care nursing recruitment and retention continues to be an area of challenge in the critical care system. Current leading practices that have been successful and sustainable to foster healthy working environments have been explored and reviewed below.
Supports for Burnout in Critical Care Teams
Critical care practitioners are reported to be at a particularly high risk of burnout due to the unique job demands present in intensive care unit environments. CCSO has continued to survey critical care teams almost annually and has expanded the Burnout Survey to include additional questions relating to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on critical care workers and systems supports needed to alleviate burnout in Ontario’s Critical Care Units.
CCSO has compiled resources and tools have been identified that may be useful for critical care teams. The intent is to offer possible resources to assist individuals, unit managers as well as critical care leaders to support teams in understanding and addressing factors that can contribute to burnout in the critical care system.
Find all our resources and tools in one convenient repository.
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