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. 

Critical Care Nursing Committee

Comprised of nursing leadership the Critical Care Nursing Committee provides critical care unit-level advice to inform provincial strategies including evaluating current health human resource initiatives; advising on related programs and quality improvement initiatives; identifying value-adding health human resource models; and supporting educational and communication strategies.

  • 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. 

  • Provincial Report (2019) : The 2019 Critical Care Workforce Profile Report is the 7th edition of a provincial survey across adult, paediatric and neonatal 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.

  • Critical Care Nursing Standards

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.  In July 2020, CCSO expanded the Burnout Survey to include additional questions relating to COVID-19 and its impacts on burnout across critical care units.  The intent of the survey was to gain a better understanding of burnout levels within Ontario’s critical care units including the influence of COVID-19 on feelings of burnout.  

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.

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