There are currently no Critical Care Nursing Programs (CCNP) or Emergency Nursing Programs (ENP) delivered in Prince Edward Island. Currently, nurses seeking certification are required to travel to Halifax to attend programs offered through the Registered Nurses Professional Development Centre (RN-PDC).
Nurses see education and skills-upgrading as the most important measures to improve quality of patient care and nurse well-being.(1) They find it difficult to leave their homes and families to participate in the 3-month programs. Employers, moreover, often do not have the resources or the capacity to release nurses to take training in Halifax for up to 15 weeks.
With the support of Nova Scotia’s RN-PDC, the PEI Nurses’ Union, the PEI Department of Health and the University of PEI have begun implementing these programs in PEI. The courses provide new skills and competencies, open up new work experience, and help PEI address the shortage of critical care and emergency nurses. They also enhance the learning culture and promote quality practice environments.