May 28, 2014
The first five graduates of Saskatchewan's new SIAST Critical Care Nursing (CCN) program were honoured today (May 28, 2014) at a special event at Battlefords Union Hospital (BUH).
Three of the grads - David Spencer, Brittany Loranger and Megan Wiese - are registered nurses who work in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) at BUH. Registered nurses Joanne Lajeunesse and Irvin Bagongon work in the ICU at Victoria Hospital in Prince Albert. The students began their CCN studies on a part-time basis in January of this year and completed the program in May.
Officials from SIAST were on hand to mark completion of the new CCN course by its first five students.
Standing, from left:
- Courtney Dingle, SIAST CCN faculty
- Joleen Klassen, SIAST CCN program head
- David Spencer & Megan Wiese, CCN graduates & RNs, BUH ICU
- Irvin Bagongon, CCN graduate & RN ICU Victoria Hospital, Prince Albert
- Netha Dyck, Dean of Nursing, SIAST
Kneeling, from left:
- Joanne Lajeunesse, RN ICU Victoria Hospital, Prince Albert
- Brittany Loranger, RN BUH ICU
Netha Dyck, Dean of Nursing at the Saskatchewan Institute of Applied Science and Technology (SIAST), praised the graduates for taking on the challenges of the program with enthusiasm and optimism. She expressed confidence that the students' learnings will enhance their contributions in their critical care settings, directly benefitting patients.
Dyck acknowledged SIAST's strong partnerships with the province's health regions, including Prairie North and Prince Albert Parkland, in bringing the new CCN program to reality. She also acknowledged the strong foundational partnerships with Saskatoon and Regina Qu'Appelle hospitals and health regions in supporting past and current CCN programs.
Joleen Klassen, SIAST's CCN Program Head, explained that developing and launching the new program was many months in the making. It replaces the former Basic Critical Care Nursing program by introducing updated curriculum and best practices.
The new program was developed with input from urban and rural critical care nurses, educators and managers to ensure that a standard level of education is available to registered nurses interested in working in a critical care environment.
"In a rural intensive care unit there are unique needs, as there are in an urban intensive care unit," Klassen said. "This program brings together the needs of both centres and creates a standard level of educatin to meet the needs of all critical care nurses in the province."
Klassen praised the tenacity and leadership of BUH ICU Nurse Manager Pat McWatters in moving development of the new program forward.
|PNHR Battlefords Union Hospital CCN Graduates & Leaders
Front row, kneeling:
David Spencer, Brittany Loranger, & Megan Wiese - CCN grads & RNs, BUH
Intensive Care Unit
Back row, standing:
Joleen Klassen, SIAST CCN program head; Shelly Horsman, BUH Director of
Acute Care; Gloria King, PNHR VP Integrated Health Services; Pat McWatters,
BUH ICU Nurse Manager; Netha Dyck, Dean of Nursing, SIAST.
Gloria King, PNHR Vice President of Integrated Health Services, acknowledged McWatters for her passion and energy leading to successful introduction of the revised program.
"Everything begins with a vision ...and that vision has brought us to today," King said. "Critical care patients have state-of-the-art care and nurses have enhanced opportunities to learn."
King also recognized the work of everyone involved in bringing the new curriculum together.
McWatters thanked Klassen and SIAST for "listening to rural Saskatchewan and the need for access to quality critical care education." McWatters commended the partnership between SIAST and all Saskatchewan health regions that embraced the opportunity to enhance the standard of care.
"Members of this team worked together and put in countless hours to meet the tight timelines. The result is a Critical Care Nursing program that provides quality and standard education across the province," McWatters said.
She added that throughout Saskatchewan, "when providing health care to the critically ill, we can now all speak the same language of critical care, understand the same assessments, operate under the same best practice standards, and make the safest decisions for our patients."
McWatters commended the five students for their commitment and dedication to enhancing their knowledge and skills in critical care.
Speaking on behalf of the nurse graduates, Irvin Bagongon said he is excited for the new program to flourish. He summed up the program in three words: Intense, Comprehensive, and Useful - ICU.
To view or print the SIAST media release 'SIAST educates nurses for intensive care units' click here.