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Canada Embraces Culture Change in LTC

April 19, 2013

The Ontario Long Term Care Association (OLTCA) hosted a conference for approximately 1,200 attendees on April 7-10, 2013 at the Toronto Convention Center.

The conference featured speakers from Pioneer Network — a national not-for-profit out of Chicago that serves the movement to create a culture of aging that is life affirming, satisfying, humane and meaningful. PHI National Coaching and Consulting Services Director Susan Misiorski is a founding board member of Pioneer Network and joined a team of outstanding speakers to help Pioneer Network bring its message of person-centered living to Canada.

The conference featured Pioneer Network CEO Peter Reed (pictured) as its keynote speaker. Dr. Reed presented an inspirational message on “The Growing Momentum of Culture Change: Impact, Reach, and Organizational Transformation.”

Misiorski and current Pioneer Network board president Lynda Crandall spoke to a crowd of more than 200 about how to get started in culture change. Crandall and Misiorski will team up again on April 30 to teach a webinar for Pioneer Network on this same topic.

In addition, Misiorski teamed up with Megan Hannan of Action Pact to co-facilitate a workshop on self-led work teams. This was Hannan and Misiorski’s first time teaching together and both agreed it was a great experience. “One of the things I love about the culture change movement is the opportunity to work alongside others who share the passion to transform the culture of aging,” Misiorski said about her experience in Canada. “We each learn so much from each other, and through our collaborations we have the potential to spread culture change more broadly and deeply than any of us could do alone.”

In reflecting upon what was different in Canada compared to the United States, Misiorski shared that the direct-care workers in Canada hold a different title. In the U.S., these employees are known as Certified Nursing Assistants; however, in Canada they are called Personal Support Workers or PSWs.

Another obvious difference was apparent by observing name tags. The leader of the nursing department in the U.S. is often called the Director of Nursing, while in Canada the most common title for this role was Director of Care. The long-term living environments are similar in size and structure to those in the U.S., and the Canadians have a similarly rigorous regulatory oversight system.

Pioneer Network’s next major conference event is in the Seattle area on August 11-15, 2013. Register early to get the best prices!

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