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.

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.

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

Nurses can register in May of 2024. Please check the course calendar for more information.

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.

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.

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

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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

Please contact de Souza Institute for course equivalency assessment.

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