Breathing new life into the MUHC Council of Nurses

Members of the McGill University Health Centre (MUHC) nursing staff spend every shift on the front lines, seeing to patients the minute they step foot into the hospital. The weight of their work is just one of the reasons why a platform for ideas and discussion is necessary for the nursing community. That’s where the MUHC Council of Nurses (CII) fits into the equation.

The Council is currently composed of  10 elected members who represent the MUHC’s various missions in nursing. It is an official advisory body that provides a platform for nurses to voice their recommendations on everything pertaining to quality, safety, accessibility, and other topics directly affecting the areas in which they work, to the MUHC Board of Directors and Executive Director.

Lula Ahmed-Shire, Rachel Nadeau (TOP), Rosa Sourial (bottom), Ariane Béllanger, Paule Jubinville, Kerline Fontaine (bottom), Madeleine Lemay (top)
Lula Ahmed-Shire, Rachel Nadeau (TOP), Rosa Sourial (bottom), Ariane Béllanger, Paule Jubinville, Kerline Fontaine (bottom), Madeleine Lemay (top)
Missing in photo: Melody Ross, Debbie Watson, Christian Machuca

Following elections in November 2016, the council has been re-energized. The new president and roster of elected members are eager to step up and make a difference in a time of change and innovation.

Meeting the team

Paule Jubinville, the new president of the Council, has been a part of the MUHC family for seven years. She began her career at the Montreal Children’s Hospital (MCH) and then made the switch over to the adult side. She’s now the Patient Flow Coordinator at the Montreal General Hospital (MGH).

Paule’s reasons for stepping up to be a part of the Council were similar to those she had for entering the field of Nursing. She cares about people, and wants to be part of the conversation surrounding the future of nursing.

“I saw it as a professional challenge. The Council was interesting to me because it is in development; it’s going through a shift. There’s a lot of potential and possibility,” she explains.

Ariane Bélanger, the Council’s representative for Pediatrics and Women’s Health, agrees. She’s been working at the MUHC for two and a half years. As a young nurse, she saw this as an opportunity to branch out and explore her options.

“I was always really involved in school and always interested in my education, so when I heard people talking about the Council I thought it would be a great opportunity to involve myself further in my profession, and to keep building on my knowledge.”

For Lula Ahmed-Shire, a representative for Adult Emergency and Mental Health and new Vice-President of the Council, the goal is to bring her extensive 16-year experience to the table when discussing best practice and optimization.

“Working in the Emergency Department, it’s especially nice to see the autonomy nurses have, the responsibility they uphold. Having a unified group of nurses who are informed and share amongst each other helps to keep this type of practice that encourages excellence in nursing,” she explains. “I want to do my part, and make the MUHC the best place to work.”

The ultimate vision

In order to be as efficient and relevant as possible, Paule says the Council needs to assess the needs that are not already being addressed by other groups in order to find their place in the MUHC community. However, there are two very clear short-term goals.

Ariane Bélanger, Paule Jubinville, Lula Ahmed-Shire
Ariane Bélanger, Paule Jubinville, Lula Ahmed-Shire

“Two big things that we will be doing is, one, creating a committee for nursing assistants (NA).  That’s one of our current goals, to gather information and ideas pertaining to quality of care and our NAs,” Paule explains.

The second big goal is to create a committee for young nurses who have been working for the MUHC for less than five years, which is something that Ariane is spearheading.

“It’s about retaining our personnel, and making sure they feel like they have a place here,” Ariane explains.

That’s why the Council wants to connect with those who are fresh to the field, to ensure they have the support, resources, and mentorship they need.

The long-term goals, as outlined by the President, are to create a solid back and forth engagement with the nursing community, and to strengthen the Council’s place as a body that people recognize. Paule, Ariane et Lula explain that they’ve already begun speaking with nurses in their respective areas, and are planting the seeds to create an open line of communication.

Calling all nurses! The next General Assembly held by the Council of Nurses will be taking place on June 1, 2017. Two sessions: From 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and another one from 12:30 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. Videoconference available at all sites.

  • Lachine Hospital: Room 4b, Charles Gallant   
  • Montreal General Hospital (MGH): Room E6.112    
  • Montreal Neurological Hospital (MNH): Jeanne Timmons amphitheatre  
  • Glen: Block C S1.6540

Are you a nurse looking to get in touch with a Council representative? Check out the chart below to see who you can relay your idea and thoughts to:



Rosa Sourial

Neuro Science (MNH)

Kerline Fontaine

Nursing Directorate (RVH and MGH)

Paule Jubinville (PRESIDENT)

Nursing Directorate (MGH)

Lula Ahmed-Shire


Emergency Department + Mental Health, (RVH)

Melody Ross


Emergency Department + Mental Health, (Douglas)

Rachel Nadeau

Emergency Department + Mental Health, (MGH)

Christian Machuca


Ariane Belanger

Pediatric + Women’s Health, (MCH)

Debbie Watson

Perioperative, (MGH)

Madeleine Lemay

Surgery , (RVH)