Nursing Health Services Research Unit  


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Our mission is to develop, conduct and disseminate research that focuses on design, management, utilization, outcomes and provision of nursing.

In 1997, the MOHLTC approached the NRU with the suggestion of completing a health human resource (HHR) planning framework and program for Ontario. As a result of the Nursing Task Force (1999) recommendations in “Good Nursing, Good Health: An Investment for the 21st Century”, the MOHLTC awarded the NRU additional funding from 1999-2004 to assist in monitoring the impact of the Nursing Task Force recommendations.  This led to an expanded role for the NRU and an additional purpose.

Overall Purpose
Our purpose is three-fold:

1. To investigate the appropriate supply, distribution and deployment of nurses and how to enable nurses to meet their responsibilities as a result of restructuring in the health care system. This purpose examines:

  • nursing human resources planning and modeling
  • nursing skill requirement
  • need and preparation required for advanced nursing practice
  • strategies to reduce system barriers to evidence-based practice
  • the effect of technological advances on delivery of nursing care
  • access and barriers to nursing services in the community

2. To determine methods to maintain quality while realizing funding efficiencies in the health care system. This purpose examines:

  • health outcomes related to alternative providers and multidisciplinary practice
  • the effects of nursing staff mix (RN, RPN) & the numbers on patient care outcomes
  • the appropriate use and role of unregulated health care workers
  • factors which facilitate an efficient and cost-effective nursing service
  • the effects of downsizing of medical schools and reduction in residents on nursing

3. Provide the MOHLTC with the basic information needed to make necessary changes to HHR practices in Ontario.

University of Toronto

Funded by the


McMaster University

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