President’s Message, March 21, 2017
Cathy Dormody RN BN COHN(C)
It has been a special honor and privilege to begin my term as President of COHNA-ACIIST in January 2017 and my first order of business is to say thank-you! Our outgoing President, Heather Temple, deserves a huge thank-you for her leadership, commitment and passion for the practice of occupational health nursing and to our association. Heather is very knowledgeable and we are fortunate that she will remain on the Board of Directors (BOD) representing Manitoba. I am grateful to be able to rely on her experience as we move forward. I would also like to thank our all of the Executive and BOD. I am inspired by everyone’s commitment to be part of a National voice. Canada is a diverse country and Occupational Health Nurses in each Province have their own set of challenges and successes. Coming together to share knowledge, expertise and innovative ideas will continue to strength our association and I am confident that we will be steadfast in addressing the challenges we face over the next two years and our accomplishments will be many. Finally, thank-you to our Administrator who continues to manage our business activities and provide guidance on the work we do. I look forward to working with you all and continuing to fulfil the mission of COHNA-ACIIST.
We are well on our way through 2017 and we have many exciting yet challenging times ahead. Our focus this year has been to continuing to add value, support the provincial members and to grow as an organization. We have some new initiatives planned and some from past successes that we will continue to maintain. There are several key elements that will help drive us forward and I would like to share them with you:
New Website: On March 21, 2017, we will launch our new COHNA-ACIIST website. This was an unexpected project that began in 2016, however, with the tireless efforts of the entire BOD we now have a new, modern, and user friendly website. All the information on our previous website has been reviewed, edited, updated and some information archived. In keeping with the “added value” to our members we are thrilled to announce that our website has the ability for each Provincial member to have their own microsite with the same functionality as the main COHNA-ACIIST site. This includes the ability to post your association/special interest group logo and have public and private members sections. We trust that this new initiative will benefit you greatly and we strongly encourage members to join. This will help to strengthen our connections and to be seen truly as a National organization. For members who wish to continue to have their own independent websites, you are invited to create a public page with an external link to your website. In the coming weeks a separate announcement and detailed instructions will sent to each member.
Building Relationships: COHNA-ACIIST is one of the 46 members of the Canadian Network of Nursing Specialties (CNNS). We are also one of the 20 specialties that hold a CNA Certification. As President of COHNA-ACIIST, I represent you on both on the Canadian Nurses Association (CNA) committees; CNNS and Certification Program Advisory Committee (CPAC). I will continue to build on the relationship established by our Past President and those before. I will keep you informed and up to date on the activities, trends and happenings that impact our Occupational Health Nursing specialty group and our practice.
We are also looking to continue to foster and build relationships with other organizations with an interest in supporting and promoting occupational health and safety.
Finally, we are especially interested in you, our own Provincial members! If you have any special projects or initiatives planned and you would like to engage COHNA-ACIIST, please let us know.
Promoting Continuing Education and CNA Certification: Were you aware, COHNA-ACIIST has an annual Bursary Award? We do but hurry! 2017 applications are due April 30th.The Bursary Award supports continuing education focused on advancing and enhancing occupational health nursing knowledge including CNA Certification in occupational health nursing.
This year we have also entered into a partnership with the University of New Brunswick (UNB) to promote a variety of online course offerings in the field of occupational health nursing and safety. Registration will be through our website! More details on this new initiative coming soon.
National Conference: As many of you are aware, annually we partner with one of our members to host a National conference. I am proud to announce that the 2017 conference is in partnership with New Brunswick Occupational Health Nurses Group (NBOHNG) and will be held on Moncton, N.B. from September 26-27, 2017. This year’s conference “Choose to Care” will have experts who will speak on current and emerging health and safety topics relevant in today’s workplaces. Stay tuned for more details and save the dates!
National Forum: COHNA-ACIIST in partnership with the Alberta Occupational Health Nurses Association (AOHNA) is planning a National Forum on Occupational Health Nursing in Canada. This is a major initiative and will take place on September 22-23, 2017 in Moncton, N.B., just prior to our National Conference. This forum will address the challenges facing Occupational Health Nurses in Canada and assist us in creating a unified strategic plan to ensure a strong and sustainable future. We will be inviting several stakeholders to participate including occupational health nursing associations and special interest groups who are currently not part of COHNA-ACIIST or CNA. More details on the forum will be shared as they develop.
As you can see, the Executive and BOD have been working diligently towards serving you better and leading many beneficial changes. I am proud to be given this opportunity and with the support of our Executive and BOD I know together we can achieve success and strengthen the practice of Occupational Health Nursing for today and the future.
Cathy Dormody RN BN COHN(C) // President
Occupational Health Nurse