On June 1, 2023, 95 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 New Brunswick beginning with these four priorities:
Funding for more specialized wound, ostomy, and continence nursing positions across the continuum of care so that the transition for the patient is seamless moving from hospital to community. There are no existing formal Nurse Specialized in Wound, Ostomy, and Continence (NSWOC) positions in New Brunswick in home care or long-term care. NSWOCs provide thorough assessments, select appropriate products and technologies, and monitor the patient as they move through the system. This provides patient-centred care, optimal clinical outcomes and is shown to save money across the overall provincial health care system.
Ensure the appropriate distribution of NSWOCs based on the patient population in each health region. There is a critical imbalance in the number of NSWOCs between Vitalité and Horizon Health Networks and within the Horizon Health Network itself. It is disproportionate to the number of wound/ostomy consults. The number of wound consults has increased by over 200% in some areas of New Brunswick.
Provide immediate public coverage for essential ostomy supplies to the 4,570 people living with an ostomy, meeting this basic human right of elimination for all New Brunswickers. New Brunswick lags other provinces in providing a well thought out and sustainable plan for ostomy reimbursement. People living with an ostomy in New Brunswick earning over $25,000 per annum should not be expected to pay out of pocket. Individuals should not choose between putting food on the table or essential ostomy supplies for this medically necessary bodily action.
Together we have launched an educational strategy to improve wound care knowledge by providing a foundational program for nurses in the Province of New Brunswick. To support this initiative, NSWOCC has provided 30 complimentary educational seats to nurses in New Brunswick to the NSWOCC WOC Institute’s foundational wound management program, part of the practice enrichment series, to enhance knowledge, skills, and judgment of nurses in the province caring for patients with wounds.
We invite you to access the meeting proceedings and to share this report with your colleagues.
About the Wound Management Course offered by the Wound, Ostomy and Continence Institute
The Wound Management Course is a six-week, paced, online course that's accredited by the Canadian Nurses Association (CNA). The learning outcomes of the course are to:
Increase your knowledge related to evidence-based wound care
Improve your ability to advocate for patients with wound related issues
Enhance your ability to collaborate with wound care specialists
Course registrants also get access to virtual mentorship and knowledge consolidation opportunities with our team of CNA certified Nurses Specialized in Wound, Ostomy, and Continence (NSWOCs).
Learn more at https://www.wocinstitute.ca/pes-woc