COVID-19 information

We are grateful for the important role you are playing on the frontlines of this unprecedented event. We know you are being asked to do more than ever before. You are the heart of our health care system, and you continue to demonstrate your dedication to your patients and their families every day.

As Ontario moved into Phase III of the COVID 19 pandemic, CNO expired all Emergency Assignment Class registrations on August 4, 2020.

Early in March 2020, the Ministry of Health authorized the Emergency Assignment Class to allow people to assist in Ontario during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Now the health system no longer needs a special class of nurses. If a need arises in the future, CNO can re-enact the EAC at the Ministry of Health’s request.

We continue to support Ontario's health care system during the pandemic.

COVID-19 update: Standard of care and nurses’ accountabilities 

CNO acknowledges that it is an unprecedented time in health care. We understand that you are stressed and may be concerned about being able to maintain standards of nursing practice. We want to assure you that the standard of care is always considered in context. The standard of care can evolve with the dynamic nature of the pandemic, including that resources may become scarce or absent.

Working within a quickly evolving environment can be challenging and distressing. In this situation, it will be important to make reasonable efforts to comply with any direction from the Chief Medical Officer of Health and your workplace policies and procedures pertaining to COVID-19 management. While CNO will continue to receive complaints and reports during the COVID-19 pandemic, we will assess all information with consideration to the circumstances in which nurses are working.

COVID-19: Practice Resources


Nurses are accountable to all standards of practice. While the province’s declaration of emergency has ended, some emergency orders will continue under the new act,  Reopening Ontario (A Flexible Response to COVID-19) Act, 2020.


While the provincial declaration of emergency has ended, some emergency orders will continue under the act, Reopening Ontario (A Flexible Response to COVID-19) Act, 2020For a list of orders still in effect, review the provincial status on COVID-19

Important resources 

Guidance and best practices 

Employers who need resources for additional worker support can register with Ontario's workforce matching portal.

How New Grads can help during COVID-19

If you haven't already done so, apply to the General Class.

If you have not written your registration exam, you may consider applying to the Temporary Class. You will need an offer of employment in order to apply for this class.

After you have written and passed your registration exam, you may then complete your registration in the General Class.

If you are still in a nursing program and want to help ...

  • contact a nursing association or a local health facility (long-term care homes, retirement homes, hospitals) to offer support.
  • In addition, the Ministry of Health is looking for experienced health care providers — including learners who have begun, but not yet completed professional training, who can help prevent and control the spread of COVID-19. Visit the Ministry of Health's Health Workforce Matching Portal for more information.

Guidance information


For answers to frequently asked questions about COVID-19, such as what the risks and symptoms are, how it spreads, and how you can protect yourself, read the Government of Canada’s FAQ page.

You can also find information about how to protect yourself from the virus, what to do if you’re sick and how to recognize possible symptoms on the Ministry of Health’s dedicated COVID-19 web page

If you are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, contact your primary care provider or Telehealth Ontario at 1-866-797-0000.


Status Reports 

To learn more about the virus, visit the World Health Organization’s info page and the government of Canada's FAQ page

Page last reviewed October 15, 2020