Nurse Practitioner, NP

Job Title: Nurse Practitioner (NPs) Enhanced Shelter Support Program

Salary: $75.00/hour, variable shifts

Hours: Full Time and Part Time Available, Monday to Friday

Location: Physical Distancing Hotel-based shelter programs located throughout GTA


Inner City Health Associates (ICHA) was a group of more than 100 physicians working in over 50 shelters and drop-ins across Toronto until March 2020. Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in Toronto, nurses and nurse practitioners have joined ICHA in efforts to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 in Toronto shelter settings. ICHA provides transitional primary care and specialist (i.e. psychiatry, substance use, and palliative care) to those who do not otherwise have access to care. We serve people who are unsheltered and temporarily living in shelters as well as those who are precariously housed. Many of ICHA’s clients have complex health needs including untreated chronic and complex multi-system diseases, an elevated risk of acute health emergencies, and serious and persistent mental illness and substance use.

Role Description:

Nurse Practitioners (NPs) will provide clinical care to individuals experiencing homelessness using a holistic, client-centered model of care with an emphasis on harm reduction, psychosocial supports and crisis de-escalation. NPs will use their advanced knowledge, skill and judgment to treat clients who may present with complex health conditions such as unmanaged chronic diseases, infectious diseases, skin conditions and wounds, mental illness and substance use issues.

The ICHA NP works collaboratively with ICHA nurses and physicians, as well as the shelter agency case managers, community workers and staff to provide primary care to clients experiencing homelessness respecting PHIPA and client consent. The NP will provide comprehensive and holistic advanced health assessment of clients’ physical and mental health through episodic primary care clinics to address urgent and chronic health concerns, escalating issues whenever necessary to the ICHA on-call physician or to Emergency Services. NPs will collaborate with city/shelter staff and others to provide social and emotional supports including crisis mitigation and case management. An ICHA Nurse Manager and Director of Clinical Services will provide indirect supervision and ongoing support.

Roles and Responsibilities:

· Conducts comprehensive health assessments of individuals experiencing homelessness throughout the lifespan.

· Assesses and manages episodic and chronic conditions commonly seen in primary health care

· Provides supportive and lifestyle counselling which may include preventative counselling, brief supportive counselling or short term crisis management when indicated

· Assesses the need for and writes orders for prescriptions, laboratory and diagnostic tests within the RN (EC) scope of practice

· Makes referrals to specialists, hospital or community resources as appropriate

· Collaborates with partners to minimize barriers to accessing services and care

· Ensures that standards of client care are maintained according to accepted College of Nurses standards, the Regulated Health Professions Act, and ICHA policies

· Participates in the development of, and gives support to, policies/strategies which are in the interest of public health and which support the recognition of the determinants of health


  • Current registration as a Registered Nurse in the Extended Class with the College of Nurses of Ontario
  • Master’s degree in nursing from a recognized university
  • Evidence of liability protection/malpractice insurance
  • Minimum of 3 years nursing experience in NP role in primary health care
  • Able to work independently in non-typical community-based primary care setting (i.e. improvised hotel clinic) with remote MD support as needed
  • Knowledge of relevant community services for individuals experiencing homelessness
  • Demonstrated thorough knowledge and understanding of infection control and prevention practices
  • Willingness to work from a harm-reduction and anti-oppression, trauma-informed framework; experience working with homeless or marginalized service users preferred
  • Willingness to explore options for risk mitigation prescribing with available supports
  • Able to manage unpredictable client presentations and situations in a collaborative and calm manner
  • Experience working with clients who use substances and who have serious and persistent mental illness
  • Willingness to work from a harm-reduction and anti-oppression, trauma-informed framework; experience working with homeless or marginalized service users preferred
  • Knowledge of and commitment to client–centred philosophy
  • Current CPR certification
  • Open minded, non-judgmental with a commitment to upholding the rights and dignity of all people and respecting their diversity
  • Knowledge and proficiency in current, evidenced-based methods and practices in health care delivery, with an emphasis on mental health, health promotion and risk management/reduction
  • Demonstrated commitment to and knowledge of community-based health care
  • Awareness of and sensitivity to the health issues of a diverse community and experience working with marginalized populations
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills
  • Strong interpersonal, organizational and administrative skills that include computer literacy and ability to work with EMR (OSCAR)
  • Ability to work flexible hours and in multiple locations throughout Toronto
  • Police check/clearance documentation (i.e. vulnerable sector screen) required