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Specialized Wound, Ostomy, and Continence Care in Alberta: Summit Meeting Proceedings
On October 5, 2023, over 100 patients, health care administration, government and academic decision makers, senior nurses from acute care, community and continuing care, Nurses Specialized in Wound, Ostomy and Continence (NSWOCs), and industry came together to address the access to specialized wound, ostomy, and continence care in Alberta
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Nurses Specialized in Wound, Ostomy and Continence Canada (NSWOCC®) is a registered charity and membership-based association for over 600 nurses specialized in the care of patients with challenges in wound, ostomy and continence and over 1,000 members overall.
NSWOCC acts in the public interest for Nurses Specialized in Wound, Ostomy and Continence (NSWOC®) to give national leadership in wound, ostomy and continence promoting high standards for NSWOC practice, education, research and administration to achieve quality specialized nursing care.
NSWOCC speaks for NSWOCs and gives them a strong national association through which they can support each other and speak with a powerful, unified voice. NSWOCC is working towards taking an active role in legislative policy which could influence the health care decisions that affect NSWOC professionals every day.
Who are NSWOCs?
A Nurse Specialized in Wound, Ostomy and Continence (NSWOC) is a registered nurse with advanced and specialized knowledge and clinical skills in wound, ostomy and continence care who has graduated from a World Council of Enterostomal Therapists (WCET) recognized education program.
Recognized as Nurses who have specialized training in wound, ostomy and continence by the Canadian Nurses Association (CNA), Nurses Specialized in Wound, Ostomy and Continence are the ONLY nursing specialty with CNA certification in wound, ostomy and continence care (WOCC(C)). From acute care hospitals, outpatient clinics, community, long term care and in independent practice, an NSWOC provides specialized holistic assessment and management as an interprofessional team member to meet the needs of individuals/families with ostomies, acute and chronic wounds and urinary and fecal continence problems.
Become an NSWOC
The Wound, Ostomy and Continence (WOC) Institute’s flagship program is our Wound Ostomy and Continence Education Program (WOC-EP). The WOC-EP is a state of the art, paced, 12-month, online program which prepares BN/BScN’s for the role of a Nurse Specialized in Wound, Ostomy and Continence (NSWOC). The final exam for the program is the Canadian Nurses Associate (CNA) certification exam, which, upon achievement, enables the NSWOC to use the credential WOCC(C).
The WOC-EP is a competency and standards of practice guided, rigorous program, aimed at insuring the high quality of its graduates. Through the CANMeds styled, competency-based preceptorship component of the program, the WOC-EP strives to mentor and grow tomorrows nurse leaders. NSWOCs graduates are among the nursing elite. They demonstrate an advanced level of critical thinking, clinical skill and leadership qualities. The advantage of NSWOCs’ tri- specialization is especially clear when patients have needs that require more than one area of specialty.
Skin Wellness Associate Nurse (SWAN™) Program
For practical nurses and diploma RNs who aspire to become respected nurse leaders and integral members of their organization’s wound, ostomy, and continence leadership team, the CNA-accredited SWAN program is the only program that offers: competency and evidence-informed advanced knowledge in wound, ostomy and continence management; confidence to transfer that knowledge into practice; recognition and respect for your competencies through the nationally recognized SWAN designation; and continuous learning and lifelong support through mentorship and collaboration in a SWAN-Nurse Specialized in Wound, Ostomy and Continence (NSWOC) team. The SWAN program is accredited by the Canadian Nurses Association.
SWANs are uniquely recognized for their advanced knowledge and their contributions as wound, ostomy and continence nurse champions in their workplaces and communities across Canada.
Skilled nurses provide optimal patient care.
The goal of the SWAN™ Program is to educate and prepare more skilled wound, ostomy and continence nurses across the spectrum of care (e.g. acute care, long-term care and home care). Graduates will have an enhanced ability to provide optimal care for individuals with wound, ostomy and continence issues as members of a collaborative NSWOC team. The program is designed to provide non-specialty nurses the ability to provide optimal wound, ostomy and continence care under the direction of the NSWOC, Clinical Nurse Specialist (Wound, Ostomy or Continence) or Physician and to be integral members of the WOC team.
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