Registered Nurses' Association of Ontario

Nursing Best Practice Guidelines

Recommendation 7.0 Individual Recommendations


7.1 A nurse performs self-assessment prior to starting a work shift and during shifts to ensure “fitness to work” and safe provision of care. This includes:
  • ensuring adequate recovery time prior to shift;
  • taking entitled breaks and supporting colleagues to do the same;
  • limiting one’s overtime
7.2 A nurse takes ownership and responsibility in identifying and reporting unsafe conditions (fatigue), in accordance with professional practice standards, without fear of reprisal. 


 7.3 A nurse must take ownership and responsibility in maintaining their own optimal personal health and well-being. This includes:
  • participating in some physical activity outside the work setting;
  • ensuring adequate rest and sleep is obtained between shifts;
  • Communicating their shift preference i.e. nights only and, where offered, self-scheduling responsibly; and,
  • Ensuring adequate nutrition.