What is the OCA Program?


The WOCN Society developed the Ostomy Care Associate (OCA) Program as a continuing education program to further empower wound, ostomy, and continence specialty nurses and to improve patient outcomes by enhancing the general ostomy knowledge for the entire nursing team. The OCA Program prepares LPNs, RNs, and other licensed clinicians to provide optimal care in ostomy, fistula, and percutaneous tube care, and function as an invaluable extension of any WOC nurse team.

The OCA course content will expire on 02/01/2027. Prior to that date, subject matter experts from the Advisory Committee will review all of the program content, and make updates where needed so that the program accreditation may be renewed.


Development of the OCA Program was funded in part by an unrestricted educational grant from Hollister, Inc.


Why Choose the OCA Program?


  • 27.0 Contact Hours for nurses
  • Evidence-based online course that meets international guidelines for ostomy care
  • Hands-on training and testing facilitated by a WOCNCB®-certified specialty nurse
  • Pricing is designed to provide affordable ostomy care education
  • On-demand delivery platform provides flexible and accessible education
  • Developed and presented by internationally recognized CWOCN leaders and educators
  • Content provides clear delineation of role and importance of CWOCN consultation for complex ostomy or fistula patient management

Healthcare Settings


The OCA Program was designed for all healthcare settings, including home health, hospitals, and healthcare systems. The WOC nurse in a healthcare setting may gather participants at his/her facility for the online program. Individuals completing the program will function under the direction of the supervising APRN, WOC specialty nurse, or physician.

Course Formats


The OCA Program is designed to be completed within three months, under the direction of a WOCN-approved OCA Course Coordinator. It consists of pre-recorded online learning modules and case studies, followed by on-site competency training and testing. The OCA Program consists of 13 lesson modules, including:


  • Anatomy & Physiology of GI Tract
  • Colostomy: Indications, Surgical Construction, and Management
  • Ileostomy, Jejunostomy: Indications Surgical Construction, and Management
  • A & P of GU System: Implications for Ostomy Care
  • Incontinent Urinary Diversions: Indications, Surgical Construction and Management
  • Pouching Systems
  • General Considerations in Ostomy Patient Care and Education
  • Rehabilitation: Living Well with an Ostomy
  • Peristomal Complications
  • Stomal Complications
  • Continent Diversions: Abdominal and Pelvic Reservoirs
  • Fistula Management: Nursing Challenges
  • Percutaneous Tube Management




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