Our Purpose and Beliefs

The Operating Room Nurses Association of Canada (ORNAC) is an organization of professional perioperative Registered Nurses dedicated to the promotion of excellence in perioperative nursing. ORNAC serves as the national spokesperson for perioperative Registered Nurses on issues affecting Registered Nurses, nursing practice, patient care and safety, and societal needs and/or expectations.

We believe:

  • Perioperative nursing is a dynamic process guided by theoretical knowledge, ethical principles, research, specialized clinical skills, and caring practice.
  • Perioperative Registered Nurses respond to complex and changing clinical needs during a crucial period of a person's surgical experience.
  • The scope of perioperative nursing practice is continually evolving as Registered Nurses respond to societal and technological changes.
  • Standards of nursing practice, as well as collegial and interdisciplinary collaboration, enhance perioperative nursing practice.
  • People are unique individuals whose needs change and may be compromised during the perioperative experience. They have the right to high-quality health care that promotes informed and responsible decision-making.
  • Health encompasses the whole being and is influenced by one's environment. Using a wellness approach, individuals and communities shall be proactive and responsible for achieving optimal health.
  • Education is an on-going life-long process and perioperative Registered Nurses are responsible for their learning. ORNAC is committed to enabling perioperative Registered Nurses to meet this responsibility.
  • The introduction to perioperative nursing should be a component of the basic nursing curriculum. To fully practice the scope of perioperative nursing, the Registered Nurse needs to acquire additional knowledge and skills.
  • ORNAC's Motto "Promoting Excellence" demonstrates commitment to meeting the needs of its members and society.


ORNAC's Constitution

Founding members formed a committee in 1983 to draft a constitution for ORNAC; the final draft was presented at Jasper in 1984. The committee reviewed and revised until 1986 when the revised document was presented and passed.

The Bylaws Committee of ORNAC formed in 1983 and remains to date as a regular agenda item for each meeting. Under this Committee the formation and regular review of the Rules and Regulations of ORNAC continue to be updated and reflect practices of ORNAC. Few revisions took place until 2004. Under the leadership of President Elect Marcy McKay 66 motions to up-date the constitution were done. The most noted change here, which occured in 2015, was the decision to remove the role of Past President from the Executive leaving four Executive members along with two representatives from each provincial member. After deliberation at the Fall 2005 Executive and Board Meeting the Past President was invited back to the Boardroom. ORNAC found with an entirely volunteer organization the role needed to be re-instated to assist with the workload.

Today’s Project’s, Tomorrows Progress, the theme of the 2005 19th National Conference held in Montreal saw a landmark change to our constitution. Here the decision was made to provide two seats to Affiliate Groups of ORNAC to sit at the Board in a limited capacity. These two new Board seats may represent any of the recognized ORNAC Affiliate groups. The Board seat shall provide voting privileges but cannot at this time hold elected executive positions. Iin 2005 we welcomed the Canadian Operating Room Leaders Group (CORL), under the guidance of Muriel Shewchuk (AB) and Pat Pocock (ON), and the Registered Nurses First Assistant Network of Canada (RNFANC), under the guidance of Pam Railton.

In November 2009, the Perioperative Nurse Educators of Canada (PNEC) were also granted ORNAC Affiliate status. Tracie Scott, as the first PNEC President on the ORNAC Board of Directors, capably represented the new PNEC organization.

November 20, 2008, ORNAC was officially incorporated under the Industry Canada’s Canadian Corporations Act as a Not for profit Association. In June 2013, ORNAC was granted continuance under the new Canadian Corporations Act for Not for Profit Associations. The ORNAC Bylaws were rewritten to be aligned with this new ACT and changes were made to reduce the size o the ORNAC Board from 28 to 17 and to include all Canadian Perioperative Registered Nurses as Members of ORNAC. ORNAC becomes a member driven organization with “one member- one vote”.

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