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Coming To Canada As A Nurse – The Procedure

If you are Coming To Canada As A Nurse, A registered or licensed practical nurse seeking permanent residency in Canada, you are invited to discover the benefits of the Quebec Skilled Worker (QSW) immigration program. Nurses with international credentials and in possession of a valid job offer and subsequent work permit may also seek temporary residency in Canada. After working in Canada on a temporary basis, permanent residency options may later present themselves through alternate immigration programs.

The Quebec Option Of Permanent Residency: 

The Province of Quebec has designed an immigration policy that reflects its high demand for nurses. With attractive salaries, available jobs and a rapidly expanding healthcare system, Quebec is dedicated in bringing the best professional international nurses to its cities and towns. The Quebec Skilled Workers program which is the province’s most popular program for permanent residency, has been set up in a way that benefits qualified nurses.

The QSW program offers internationally educated nurses an opportunity to apply for permanent residency in Canada without being required to secure a job offer first. This program is a points-based selection system where points are awarded for various factors which include education, area of training, age, work experience, language ability etc. If an applicant scores enough points to reach the pass-mark, he or she will generally qualify for a Quebec Selection Certificate, which ultimately leads to a permanent resident visa in Canada, in the absence of security and/or  health issues.

The QSW selection criteria awards a significant number of points for those that are fluent in French language. In fact, many nurses under this program are able to score enough points in order to reach the pass mark without obtaining any points for French language ability. This is because nurses are able to easily earn very high points for the “area of training” selection factor as well as high points for their education.

The Work Permit Option For Temporary Residency: 

As the Canadian Nurses Association (CNA) is predicting a continued shortage of nurses in the future, there are more nursing jobs in the country than before. Professional international nurses may apply to work temporarily in Canada. Temporary residency for foreign trained nurses may be achieved if the applicant secures a valid job offer and with gradual process, a work permit.

To begin this process, a candidate with a nursing degree obtained from outside Canada must have their educational credentials assessed. Since educational credentials can be assessed from within and outside Canada, applicants are given the option to remain in their country of residence during the assessment process.

After the assessment, applicants must then register as a nurse in Canada. Upon completion, an applicant can start the process of obtaining a job offer and work permit in Canada. To hasten the process of securing a job, some individual provinces have implemented services to assist and connect internationally educated nurses to employment opportunities in healthcare communities.

How to register as a nurse in Canada:

Any nurse planning to work in Canada must be deemed fit or as qualified to practice as a Registered Nurse (RN) or Licensed/Registered Practical Nurse (LPN/RPN). To be eligible, an applicant must register with either the Canadian Council for Practical Nurse Regulators (CCPNR) or Canadian Nurses Association (CAN).

Registration requirements are established by individual provinces and territories in Canada. In order to register with the CNA or CCPNR, nurses must first apply to the nursing regulatory body of the province or territory where they choose to work:

Generally, in order to be qualified to register as an RN or LPN, an applicant will be required to show competency to practice. To achieve this, applicants must have their education credentials assessed. Once the credentials have been assessed and deemed equivalent and qualified to nursing education programs in Canada, the nursing regulatory body will then address whether other application requirements have been met. In addition to the application requirements, applicants must have work experience, good character, language proficiency, screening for criminal history and registration in the jurisdiction where the applicant currently practices.

Once a positive assessment of the application requirements has been met, Canadian provinces and territories, except Quebec, require nurses to write the Canadian Registered Nurse Examination (CRNE) or Canadian Practical Nurse Registration Exam (CPNRE) as part of the registration or licensure process (the province of Quebec maintains its own registration examination). Presently, one can only write these exams in Canada. Upon the successful completion of the required examination, the applicant may be qualified to work as a nurse in Canada.

You can also see Canada PR process and requirements for 2019.