On-Demand Chemotherapy Competency Maintenance Course Frequently Asked Questions

March 5, 2024

Cancer Care Ontario released Provincial Position Statements for Nursing Practice in systemic treatment administration in 2021. The Systemic Cancer Treatment Administration Standards provide additional description of the education and training requirements.

An initial competency and certification education program that includes:

  • theoretical learning with evaluation, and
  • supervised clinical practice with evaluation.

Maintenance of competence program that includes:

  • self-reflection and professional development, and
  • maintenance of knowledge and skill.

What are the course offerings from de Souza Institute on Systemic Cancer Treatment Administration?

The Institute offers two online and highly interactive courses that support the provincial standards in chemotherapy and biotherapy administration and safety:

  • the Provincial Standardized Chemotherapy and Biotherapy Course (PSCB) for initial competency development, and
  • the Chemotherapy Competency Maintenance Course (CCMC or CCMD).

The above two courses are updated regularly to reflect the latest national and provincial standards, and are linked to the CCO Drug Formulary and monographs.

The unique experience for students is augmented by the integration of case studies, workshops, and opportunities for clinically relevant and practice-based knowledge application.

What is the name of the new on-demand version of the Chemotherapy Competency Maintenance Course?

The new course name is CCMD00DOM24. The four letter course code is CCMD.

What is the difference between the monthly offering of Chemotherapy Competency Maintenance Course (CCMC) versus the new on-demand version of the course (CCMD)?

Both courses are of the same duration and cover the same content. The difference is the start time of the course. In the monthly offering of CCMC, nurses will all start from the same day and have 8 weeks to complete the course. In the on-demand offering of CCMD, nurses can start any time and have 8 weeks to complete the course, as long as they are two months (8 weeks) before their 24 month due date. The 8 weeks is the duration of the CCMC course.

When will the new on-demand CCMD be available for registration?

Nurses can register as early as May 6, 2024.

When is the last day for nurses to register for the on-demand CCMD?

Nurses can register to the on-demand CCMD any time – up until two months (8 weeks) before their 24 month due date. The 8 weeks is the duration of the CCMD course.

Where can nurses find their 24 month due date?

Nurses can find their 24 month due date on their PSCB/CCMC certificate downloadable in their de Souza “My Account”. They will continue to receive the 4 automated courtesy reminders as well.

After a nurse registers, how soon will they receive access to the course?

A nurse will receive access to the course once their manager has completed the approval process and payment has been submitted.

How long will a nurse have to complete the on-demand version of CCMD?

Nurses who register and start the course 8 weeks before their 24 month due date will have 8 weeks to complete the course. Nurses must complete the course by their 24 month due date.

Can a nurse who has already registered in a monthly offering of CCMC (i.e., CCMC01May24 or CCMC01June24) switch to an On-demand version?

Nurses who have already registered in CCMC01May24 or CCMC01June24 will receive the same course content as CCMD. They can complete CCMC as scheduled. For their next renewal in two years-time, they will receive reminders to register in CCMD.

What is the On-Demand CCMD renewal timeline?

CCMD’s timeline is the same as CCMC.

In coordination with Cancer Care Ontario/Ontario Health, de Souza Institute will use the following criteria:

  • All renewals will be on a 24-month cycle. Nurses who have completed the PSCB or CCMC will need to successfully complete the next CCMC course by the 24-month expiry date. For example, because the CCMC course is 8 week long in duration, nurses who completed the PSCB/CCMC course on July 11, 2022 will need to register before May 11, 2024 in order to complete the course by July 11, 2024 (the latest).
  • Nurses have the option of taking CCMD earlier than the 24 month renewal timeline. For example, if a nurse is planning for an upcoming maternity leave, they can take CCMD at 12 month post their last completion. In another example, nurses who administer systemic therapy occasionally may chose to take the CCMD course early.

Do nurses get reminders for their renewal course timeline?

Nurses get four courtesy email reminders prior to the last possible course offering to meet the Chemotherapy Competency Maintenance requirement timeline. The five reminders are: 12 months, 16 months, 18 months, 20 months and 21 months from the end of the previous PSCB or CCMD course. For this reason it is important to keep your de Souza account profile up to date so you will not miss these courtesy reminders. For nurses who plan to go on maternity leave, it is recommended to use an email address that they will have access to, when not at work.

What happens if a nurse does not obtain a passing grade on the final exam?

Nurses can attempt the exam twice. Nurses are encouraged to review their exam, modules, and connect with the course facilitator for support and feedback. If a nurse does not obtain a passing grade (80% or higher) on the final exam, they will need to retake the Provincial Standardized Chemotherapy and Biotherapy course.

What happens if nurses fail to complete the renewal course within the timeline?

Nurses whose Chemotherapy Competency Maintenance renewal lapses will need to repeat the Provincial Standardized Chemotherapy and Biotherapy (PSCB) Course.

If a nurse goes on Maternity Leave/Sick Leave, would the nurse get an extension for the renewal course?

Please contact a de Souza Institute educator prior to the planned maternity leave for advice. We recommend that you inform the Institute of your planned maternity leave 3-4 months in advance so that we could help you choose an option that works best for you. A medical note or a letter from HR will be required. Please visit de Souza Institute’s Cancellation, Incomplete or No Show Policy.

If a nurse takes a Systemic Cancer Treatment Administration course from another organization, would it be recognized by de Souza Institute?

Please contact de Souza Institute for course equivalency assessment.

How are managers/educators informed whether a nurse has completed PSCB/CCMD?

Currently, when nurses complete either PSCB or CCMD, their course outcome is sent to their email on file, copied to their respective manager.