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With new agreements in two provinces over the past two months, The Michener Institute of Education at UHN is accelerating its long-term goal of ensuring Canada has an adequate supply of critically-needed health professionals.
"Since it was created in 1958, Michener has been a jewel in Ontario's higher education and healthcare crown," says Michener Principal Dr. Harvey Weingarten. "It is unlike any other institution in Canada in how it is designed to solve some of Canada's most challenging health human resource needs."
In early March, Michener entered into a partnership in Saskatchewan that will increase training capacity and open doors for those seeking careers in the growing field of medical imaging. This Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), with the National Medical Imaging Clinic, Education & Research Centre and the James Smith Cree Nation, will create Saskatchewan's first MRI technologist training program.
The program will also allow practicing radiation technologists to maintain their credentials within Saskatchewan and includes a bridging program for Indigenous youth to enter into the MRI technologist program and pursue a career in medicine.
"This partnership is good for Saskatchewan not just because it will build capacity in medical imaging, it's also because this is a true treaty relationship with the province and with Canada," says Dwayne Seib, Director of Operations for James Smith Cree Nation.
"Besides increasing access to medical imaging services, we have an opportunity to show people medical imaging is something they can consider, and we can provide the education here."
Just weeks earlier, Michener signed an MOU with the government of Nova Scotia to help increase training capacity for healthcare technologist positions that are in high demand in that province. Brian Wong, Nova Scotia's Minister of Advanced Education, praised Michener as a "world-renowned training provider with an impressive track record."
These two agreements are just part of Michener's overall goal of preparing more practitioners in the complex and technologically rich areas of healthcare where Michener has unique and advanced training expertise. These are often unsung and often unseen professionals who are key in prevention, diagnosis and treatment of disease. Without them, the healthcare system would collapse.
"Michener has proven by its partnership with Ontario and now these new partnerships that it can be a national leader in innovative, experientially based post-secondary education," Dr. Weingarten says.
"The need has never been greater for Michener to apply these strengths to help meet the needs of patients across Canada."