Covid-19 Contingency Plans for Program Faculty and Students

student nurse
March 23, 2020

On Tuesday March 17, the Nova Scotia Health Authority (NSHA) suspended student learner placements due to the COVID-19 outbreak. As the situation rapidly evolves, NSCN is in continuous contact with all LPN, RN, NP and re-entry program faculty to discuss contingency plans for their curriculum.

The focus continues to be on exploring solutions that will enable students to graduate as soon as possible. Alternate learning strategies are being developed to allow students to meet the program outcomes and achieve the entry-level competencies for safe practitioners.

This unprecedented time requires agility, creativity and untapped options for our faculty and students. Both NSCN and faculty are committed and confident that together we will arrive at a plan in the best interest and safety for the public, students and faculty.

Considerations for nursing program contingency plans include:

  • All Nova Scotia LPN, RN, NP and re-entry programs approved by NSCN can and should use alternate and feasible learning approaches as deemed appropriate by faculty in response to the COVID -19 outbreak to minimize the effect on student graduation times.
  • The expectation is that at the time of graduation, students will have met the entry-level competencies for their respective designation and will have been evaluated by faculty to ensure they have the knowledge, skills and judgement required to practise safely and ethically.
  • Nursing programs are required to document all changes made to the curriculum theory and clinical during the COVID-19 outbreak. Faculty will continue to provide reports of these changes to NSCN and also document in their June annual reports to NSCN. Any program modifications for the purpose of the COVID-19 outbreak are not considered permanent.
  • The programs will continue to submit the approved graduation list of their students to NSCN. NSCN will take necessary and additional measures to ensure these graduates are licensed to practise nursing.

NSCN recognizes that this is a challenging time for faculty, staff and students and we are committed to collaborating on next steps as this unprecedented situation persists.

If you have any questions, contact Paula Prendergast, Director of Registration and Education Approval, at For resources and more information on NSCN’s response to COVID-19, click here.

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