October 2023

CNO’s Registration Practices in 2022: Highlights from the Fair Registration Practices Report

As part of our commitment to fair and transparent registration practices, CNO submits an annual report to the Office of the Fairness Commissioner (OFC), a government agency that oversees the registration processes of regulated professions and trades in Ontario.

CNO’s Fair Registration Practices Report provides an overview of our registration activities, policies and initiatives in the previous year. It also highlights the improvements and changes that we have implemented or planned, to enhance the fairness, objectivity and timeliness of its registration decisions.

Here are some of the highlights from the 2022 submission:

  • Temporary Class and Reinstatement Registration Regulation Changes: CNO amended its regulations to allow applicants who have met all the registration requirements except for passing the entry-to-practice exam to register in the Temporary Class for up to two years. This change was made to address the challenges and delays caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. CNO also revised its reinstatement policy to allow former members who have been out of practice for more than three years to reinstate their registration without having to complete additional education or assessment.

  • REx-PN Entry-to-Practice Examination: In Jan. 2022, CNO implemented the REx-PN, a new entry-to-practice exam for applicants who want to become RPNs in Ontario. The REx-PN is a computer-based, adaptive test that assesses the competencies and knowledge required for safe and effective RPN practice.

  • Nursing Program Transformation Initiative (NPTI): In 2022, CNO collaborated with the Government of Ontario’s NPTI to share information and data to help inform the development of several online, asynchronous gap filler programs. These programs are designed to help internationally educated nurses (IENs) and Canadian-educated nurses who have not met the currency requirement to bridge their gaps in knowledge, skills and judgement.

  • Supervised Practice Experience Partnership (SPEP): Launched in Jan. 2022, SPEP offers applicants who have not met the evidence of practice or language proficiency requirements an option to complete a supervised practice experience in Ontario. The SPEP is a partnership between CNO, Ontario Health, health care employers and nursing education providers. It provides applicants with an opportunity to demonstrate their current nursing knowledge, skill and judgement and their language proficiency skills in a clinical setting. To date, we have registered 2,410 new nurses through SPEP.

  • Language Proficiency Policy: CNO’s new Language Proficiency policy took effect in March 2022. The new policy outlines a variety of mechanisms as options for applicants to provide evidence of language proficiency for registering to practice as nurses in Ontario. These include nursing or health care-related education and/or experience in an English or French setting, standardized language tests or other evidence accepted by CNO.

CNO’s Fair Registration Practices Report demonstrates its ongoing efforts to ensure that its registration practices are fair, transparent, objective and impartial. Learn more about how we are modernizing applicant assessment.


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