Research on the Health Workforce

An Evaluation of the Nurse Practitioner Continuing Education Implementation Project:
Final Report to the Council of Ontario University Programs in Nursing (COUPN)
K.C. Tilleczek*, S. Caty*, N. Russell*, R.W. Pong, and E. Rukholm

In 1995, the Council of Ontario University Programs in Nursing (COUPN) began offering the Primary Health Care Nurse Practitioner Education Program via distance education. The program is offered in English at ten university schools of nursing and in French at two university schools of nursing. Health Canada has announced that COUPN will administer a $1.5 million fund to support continuing education programs for NPs who work in rural, northern, and remote areas in Ontario. Prior to designing and piloting continuing education programs for nurse practitioners (NPs), COUPN commissioned CRaNHR to conduct a continuing education needs assessment study, with a focus on the NPs in rural, northern, and remote communities in Ontario.

COUPN designed and delivered 5 courses delivered in English. The courses were: Fundamentals of Primary Health Care; Pharmacotheraputics; Emergency health care in rural settings; Issues in persistent illness; and Issues in mental health. CRaNHR has completed an evaluation of each using an action research design in which CRaNHR researchers worked together with the COUPN implementation team.

A multiple method approach was used to answer the following three general questions: 1. Did participants learning what they want and need? 2. Did the method of delivery helping or hindering? 3. What other continuing education activities could be developed? Learning assessment and focus group data were collected and analyzed to inform the ongoing implementation process. The executive summary and complete report can be accessed.

(funded by the Council of Ontario University Programs in Nursing (COUPN))

[To read the Literature Review and Annotated Summary of Evaluating Continuing Education for Rural Nurse Practitioners, please click here.]

(Names in bold denote CRaNHR investigators and research staff. Names with an * denote former CRaNHR investigators and research staff.)

Those who are interested in accessing a copy of the report, please contact CRaNHR at 705-675-1151 ext. 4347 or by e-mail at cranhr@laurentian.ca.