Canada always experienced a shortage of nurses. However, with the pandemic, the need for these professionals has increased dramatically. In an attempt to bring more nurses to the country, Canada uses immigration pathways that target international workers in healthcare. Here are a few options for those who are willing to immigrate to Canada as a nurse.
The National Occupation Classification (NOC) specifies two types of nurses: registered nurses and registered psychiatric nurses (NOC 3012), skill level A, and licensed practical nurses (NOC 3233), skill level B. Eligible candidates should find an immigration program that has one of those categories.
Since newcomers' intake has reduced due to the pandemic, the IRCC has (Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada) decided to augment the immigration number to welcome more than 1.2 million until 2023. So to fulfill this goal, Canada will be focusing on potential newcomers outside and inside the country.
Immigration streams for medical workers and students in Canada
On April 14, Canada announced six new immigration programs for foreigners already working in the country. One is a healthcare stream for professionals, including nurses. The other stream is meant for Francophones. Graduate students in Canada with a nursing degree can try new options for international students.
From May 6, the immigration department will start processing 20,000 new applications for healthcare positions across the country. This will be done through a temporary program that will last until November 5. On the other hand, French-speaking PR applicants are not limited in time. Qualified candidates need one year of Canadian work experience in one of the 40 listed healthcare occupations, and they need to be full-time workers at the time of application. The minimum language requirement is CLB 4.
You can immigrate to Canada as a nurse through the federal and provincial pathways designed for medical employees.
Immigrate to Canada as a nurse through Express Entry
The FSWP accepts healthcare professionals with foreign work experience in a NOC skill level 0, A, or B. It should be at least one year of work experience in the last ten years. Candidates must have at least a CLB 7 in English or NCLC 7 in French. The minimum cut-off score is 67 out of 100.
Under the Canadian Experience Class, candidates should have at least one year of work experience during the last three years in occupation levels 0, A, or B. The language requirement for people applying with NOC 0 or A occupations is CLB or NCLC 7; for applicants under NOC B occupations, the language score is CLB or NCLC 5. A job offer is not mandatory but definitely advantageous if a candidate has one.
IRCC runs both the FSWP and CEC through the Express Entry system. The system evaluates applicants with the Comprehensive Ranking System and assigns a score based on candidates' education level, language skills, age, work experience, etc. The highest-ranking candidates receive an invitation to apply (ITA).
Immigrate to Canada as a nurse through PNPs
Some Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs) run immigration pathways targeting nurses only. Others open their streams to foreign workers in general, including a few healthcare professionals. In remote provinces, such as New Brunswick, nurses are in great demand. A skilled occupation like this is listed in British Columbia's Healthcare Professional stream, Quebec's Regular Skilled Worker Program, and Quebec's Experience Program.
Different provinces operate a few programs for nurses. The federal and provincial programs can sometimes align with each other. For instance, a province might connect its programs to Express Entry to search for eligible candidates; such programs are called "enhanced." Applicants receiving a nomination from an enhanced stream get additional 600 points toward their CRS score. Then the ITA is guaranteed.
Why immigrate to Canada as a nurse?
As mentioned earlier, Canada needs nurses of all levels. You could find a job in Canada as a registered nurse, dental nurse, licensed practical nurse, or nurse aid. You will earn anywhere from $78,684 to $95,000 as an experienced nurse.
Other benefits of immigrating to Canada as a nurse and becoming a permanent resident are listed below:
Public healthcare is available to all Canadian citizens and permanent residents, and their family members.
Your children will receive a western education and will have great job prospects anywhere in the world.
Multiculturalism and tolerance
Canada’s multiculturalism is carved in the law. As a result, the country is known as one of the most welcoming and tolerant nations. People there can freely express their faith because it’s protected by the Canadian Charter of Human rights and Freedoms.
Security and safety
Canada was ranked second safest place globally, making it a great country to raise a family or immigrate as a single woman.
Many job opportunities
Thousands of nursing jobs are available throughout Canada, offering high-paying salaries.