Landmark Agreement Standardizes Cancer Care Training

Alberta Health Services Partners with de Souza Institute to Deliver Training Program

EDMONTON, Sept. 27, 2016 /CNW/ - Standardized cancer care training in Canada is taking a giant step forward with a partnership between Alberta Health Services and de Souza Institute. The multi-year agreement establishes the Oncology Practice Readiness Education Program (O-PREP). This program is designed to standardize the orientation of new employees working within CancerControl Alberta and create a province-wide learning environment that is current, easily accessible and portable. This will allow trained individuals to move within Alberta Health Services and avoid the redundancy of re-training as it relates to cancer care.

O-PREP is an all-encompassing program that supports a person-centred approach to treating cancer patients.  This program includes courses tailored to meet the needs of interdisciplinary providers such as nurses, social workers, psychologists and rehabilitation therapists including occupational and physical therapists. Furthermore, CancerControl Alberta plays an integral role in adapting the program to meet local needs throughout Alberta including rural facilities and various service types ensuring that person-centred, evidence-informed practices are delivered to Albertans.

"Delivering a province-wide oncology orientation supports patient and family centred care.  It provides solutions on how to bring standardized training to our health providers so that they can deliver safe, consistent and quality health services to Albertans," said Nancy Guebert, Chief Program Officer CancerControl Alberta (Interim) at Alberta Health Services.

"We are very proud and excited about our partnership with Alberta Health Services.  We see this as a model from which we can learn from each other and bring standardized approaches to training and online education to everyone in Canada," said Dr. Mary Jane Esplen, Executive Director of de Souza Institute.  "This collaboration lays the foundation for building a much needed national program in oncology and palliative care training."

About Alberta Health Services

Alberta Health Services is the provincial health authority responsible for planning and delivering health supports and services for more than four million adults and children living in Alberta. Its mission is to provide a patient-focused, quality health system that is accessible and sustainable for all Albertans.

About de Souza Institute

Established in 2008, de Souza Institute, is a part of the University Health Network and partners with Cancer Care Ontario.  It is funded by Ontario's Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care to provide ongoing educational support, professional development and career counseling to nurses caring for cancer patients and families. de Souza Institute is providing cancer care excellence by: delivering innovative continuing education and mentorship programs; helping nurses to achieve national specialty certification; funding graduate scholarships to develop tomorrow's leaders, and supporting in self-care and career development. To learn more about de Souza Institute visit

SOURCE de Souza Institute

Image with caption: "de Souza Institute (CNW Group/de Souza Institute)". Image available at:

For further information: Alberta Health Services, Kristin Bernhard, 403-943-1201,; de Souza Institute, Deyan Kostovski, 416-417-8566,


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de Souza Institute

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