Education is the first step to empowerment for Licensed Practical Nurses, and the CLPNA ensures this quest for excellence continues every step of the way. We work tirelessly to anticipate the future needs of Albertans; to share our innovations and embrace interprofessional collaboration; and to support the ongoing competency of our dedicated LPNs – leaders in healthcare.
LPN opportunities continue to evolve and expand as practical nurses innovate in practice. The CLPNA provides practice consultation to LPNs, students, employers, government and other healthcare stakeholders.
The Practice department responds to inquiries about scope of practice, continuing competence and professionalism. Increased questions about self-employment, immunization, foot care, dialysis, documentation, phlebotomy, community care and clinic nursing were seen in 2014. With inquiries up 20% over the last two years, the CLPNA enhanced the practice consulting team by hiring an additional full-time LPN Practice Consultant in September 2014.
CLPNA continues to offer face-to-face professional practice sessions and webinars in 2014. Employers, managers, clinical educators and LPNs routinely seek information about leadership, documentation standards, medication administration, self-regulation, autonomy and professional responsibility. We presented on topics including scope of practice, autonomy, leadership, documentation and the Continuing Competency Program at many locations over the last year.
In addition, CLPNA continues to offer student orientation services through video media and webinars, providing maximum flexibility for both practical nursing students and educators. This service provides information on self-regulation, scope of practice, national examination, new graduate registration and licensure, and assists new graduates through the initial registration process.
CLPNA continues its commitment and influence to enhance patient safety and create positive workplace cultures. We were featured in the Health Quality Council of Alberta (HQCA) Annual Review of 2013-14 for our collaboration and leadership on the topic of disruptive behaviours in the workplace. We received multiple employer requests for presentations on the topic of managing co-worker abuse and continue to work with four other health regulators to create resources to support health professionals in addressing and managing co-worker abuse. This joint project is partially funded through grants from Alberta Employment and Immigration, Occupational Health and Safety Program Development and Research (AEI-OHS).
Further, CLPNA released self-study eLearning modules, videos and learning tools on:
- Nursing Documentation 101. Nurses know that accurate documentation is an important component of their professional and legal responsibilities. Using videos, quizzes, games and interactive activities, CLPNA developed an eLearning course that provides the knowledge and practical skills needed to ensure LPNs have opportunity to keep their knowledge current.
- LPNs in Leadership Roles – Supervising Health Care Aides. LPNs working in continuing care, supportive living and home care positions need support in their leadership roles supervising health care aides in today’s practice environments. This video was developed to overview autonomy, leadership, scope of practice, assignment of care and communication required of today’s nurses in leadership roles.
- Registration and the Continuing Competency Program. To support LPNs in the 2015 Registration Renewal process, especially as it relates to the Continuing Competency Program, CLPNA provided a video and live webinars. These resources included tips on how to complete Registration Renewal, how to choose learning objectives to build a learning plan and how to report on completed learning using self-reflection.
- Legalities in Nursing. When medical errors cause lasting injury, the patient can sue both the doctor and the nurse. Nurses who have experienced a medical malpractice lawsuit describe how much it affected their work life, personal life, health and well-being. The CLPNA believes understanding the basics of malpractice can help alleviate fear, avoid errors and improve patient safety. This video series is exclusively available for members.
Outreach and collaboration continued as we worked with the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Alberta (CPSA) to develop a Fact Sheet to clarify the authorization for bladder scanning for LPNs. This document clarifies the need for supervision around this restricted activity authorization, was shared with LPN employers, and is now available on the CLPNA website.
CLPNA’s commitment to quality care and to the empowerment of nurses is demonstrated by ongoing Competency Profile Reviews. This comprehensive consultation with practical nurse educators, LPNs and employers is part of a revision of the current Profile to better reflect current practical nurse education and work-based competencies of the LPN profession in Alberta. This review will result in the addition of new areas to the Profile including: Endoscopy, Dermatology, Neonatal Intensive Care; and updates to Community Health, Seniors Health, Mental Health and Addictions. The revised edition of the Competency Profile is projected for release at the end of April 2015.
LPNs practice evidence-informed nursing, education, research, management and administration.