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Foreign health care workers

Canada budgets $1.5M to help foreign health care workers get jobs in Canada

Canada announced $1.5 million to help foreign health care workers get their credentials assessment and recognition.

Marie-France Lalonde, Parliamentary Secretary to the Immigration Minister Sean Fraser, said this will help foreign health care workers fill important jobs in Canada.

The Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario’s (CHEO’s) National Newcomer Navigation Network (N4) oversees the initiative. N4 will see the creation of a platform for foreign health care workers to get information on credential recognition.

The key aims of the project include:

  • identifying problems that foreign health care workers face in getting credentials recognition
  • speeding up the process of credential recognition and removing barriers to working in the health care sector; and also
  • making policy recommendations to address foreign health care workers concerns and issues

N4 launched in April 2019 to help newcomers better access health and social services.

“CHEO has a proven track record of ensuring health and social service sector professionals have the knowledge and tools they need to provide equitable care and services to newcomers,” Lalonde said. 

“We are pleased to continue working with the National Newcomer Navigation Network to support health care professionals educated abroad in securing jobs in Canada’s health care sector. 

“These services will help more newcomers succeed, while also helping to build a better future for all Canadians.”

British Columbia (BC) recruiting foreign nurses with $12M funding

In April 2022, Canada’s province of British Columbia (BC) also announced recruiting foreign health care workers with $12 million funding. The is to recruit foreign health care workers by making it easier – and cheaper – for Canada to recognize their credentials.

The BC initiative recruitment program will include:

  • marketing campaign to promote B.C. to internationally educated nurses
  • new website to provide information on available supports
  • foreign nurses recruitment support
  • financial support for foreign nurses, and also,
  • programs to encourage them remain in BC as permanent residents

“This investment is an exciting step in providing more support for internationally-educated nurses who want to work in B.C.,” says Michael McMillan, president and chief executive officer of the Health Employers Association of BC.

See also Nurses from Singapore can qualify to work as nurses in Canada – Guidelines.

See also:

BC will provide $9 million in bursaries to help foreign-trained nurses pay for credential assessment fees. That will benefit about 1,500 nurses in the first year alone.

Those bursaries will range from $1,500 to $16,000, depending on the credential assessment or upgrading.

How to become Canadian PR as foreign health care workers

Most popular among foreign health care workers are the Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP) and Canadian Experience Class (CEC). To be eligible for these programs, it is important to have skilled health care work experience.

Neither program requires a candidate to have a job offer. However, having one can significantly increase your likelihood of successfully applying for Canadian permanent residence.

Canada uses the Express Entry system and the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) to score and rank immigration applications. The CRS assigns a score to candidates based on the information you entered in your federal Express Entry profile. Candidates are put into a pool of other candidates. IRCC periodically conducts draws from this pool to invite highest scorer for PR.

See How to create an Express Entry profile.

FSWP requires an applicant to have at least one year of work experience from anywhere within the last ten years. FSWP applicant also must score a CLB 7 in English or NCLC 7 in French on all four language competencies. Those are: reading, writing, speaking, and listening. They must additionally score at least 67/100 on the six-factor test that assesses candidates’ education level and language skills.

The CEC requires one year of work experience in Canada, within the last three years. Applicants must prove scores, across all four language competencies.

In addition, many Canadian provinces have more than one program that target foreign nurses in their Provincial immigrant nominee programs (PNPs). Through the PNPs, Canadian provinces are able to select candidates who meet their labor and skilled jobs shortages and recommend them for Canadian permament residency.

Foreign nurses are a top target of the PNPs. This is because they are in high demand due to nurse shortages in Canada.

The PNPs have streams dedicated specifically for foreign nurses only. Other streams available to foreign nurses target several health professions, or they are open to skilled workers in general.

See also Upgrade your foreign credentials for Canada study or work permit.