George Brown launches program to deal with long-term health crisis

Two-semester program will teach health care professionals about communication, interprofessional collaboration and problem-solving

With Ontario’s long-term care facilities in a state of crisis during the COVID-19 pandemic, Toronto’s George Brown College is stepping up to help prepare health-care workers for the challenges ahead. 

Beginning this fall, the school is launching the Interprofessional Complex and Long-Term Care program, a first-of-its-kind postgraduate program aimed at providing evidence-based, collaborative training to give optimal care to those in long-term care facilities or in a home setting. The full-time, two-semester program was developed in collaboration with Ontario Centres for Learning, Research & Innovation in Long-Term Care at Baycrest and Ryerson University.

The program is open to all health-care providers including nurses, personal support workers, dental professionals, fitness specialists and hearing specialists. Graduates can work as coordinators or managers in health-care facilities to deliver interprofessional care.

“With heightened focus on critical vulnerabilities in long-term care settings, it is more important than ever to enhance the skills and core competences of healthcare providers,” says Wendy Ellis, from George Brown’s School of Nursing, in a statement.

“Increasing access to programs that not only teach health care, but communication, interprofessional collaboration and problem-solving is crucial. This program gives students the opportunity to collaborate virtually, to learn from each other, and to work towards providing excellent client care.” 

The program was intentionally designed to be taken online, integrating simulation and problem-based learning grounded in educational game and digital open world learning. Students participate in a variety of collaborative real-life scenarios in which interprofessional teams work together to solve clinical cases. Students will also participate in micro lectures, readings and discussions.

The program consists of seven courses, taken at both George Brown and Ryerson University, and includes a 120-hour clinical field placement. 

Earlier this week, the Canadian military was deployed to help deal with a deadly COVID-19 outbreak at the Vista Care Community long-term care facility in Woodbridge. Last month, there was another outbreak at the Pinecrest Nursing Home in Bobcaygeon. 


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