Immigrate To Canada As A Physiotherapist: All You Need To Know

Immigrate To Canada As A Physiotherapist: All You Need To Know
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A federal forecast indicates hundreds of Canada jobs for physiotherapists will go begging for a want of qualified applicants to fill them over the coming nine years.

“For physiotherapists, over the period 2022 – 2031, new job openings arising from expansion demand and replacement demand are expected to total 14,300,” says the Job Bank federal government job-hunting and career-planning website.

“The labour shortage conditions seen in recent years is expected to persist into the 2022 – 2031 period.”

Despite Canada’s already record-breaking levels of immigration, employers are expected to continue to struggle to fill these positions, providing a perfect opportunity for qualified foreign nationals to gain their permanent residence in Canada.

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) announced earlier this year that Canada’s Express Entry system will begin targeting 82 jobs in healthcare, technology, trades, transport and agriculture this summer – including physiotherapists.

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The flagship Express Entry selection system has previously only conducted draws based on immigration programs, not by targeting specific occupations.

Under the changes announced at the end of May, the Express Entry streams, including the Federal Skilled Worker (FSW) program, Federal Skilled Trades (FST) program and Canadian Experience Class (CEC), as well as parts of the Provincial Nominee Programs (PNP) will now be more responsive to labour market needs.

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Immigration Minister Sean Fraser is hoping that opening up the Express Entry system to these occupation-targeted draws will help alleviate Canada’s labour shortages.

“Everywhere I go, I’ve heard loud and clear from employers across the country who are experiencing chronic labour shortages,” said Fraser.

“These changes to the Express Entry system will ensure that they have the skilled workers they need to grow and succeed. We can also grow our economy and help businesses with labour shortages while also increasing the number of French-proficient candidates to help ensure the vitality of French-speaking communities.”

200 Physiotherapy Jobs Are Expected To Go Begging For A Want Of Workers In The Next Nine Years

Job Bank, the federal job-hunting and career-planning website, is forecasting a shortage of 200 workers to fill these jobs in Canada over the coming nine years.

The federal government career-planning website is also forecasting the job prospects for physiotherapists to be good in every single Canadian province over the next three years.

Foreign nationals seeking to get their permanent residence through an occupation-targeted Express Entry draw will need at least six months of continuous work experience in Canada or abroad within the past three years in one of these occupations to be eligible.

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That experience can have been gained while working in Canada as temporary foreign workers with work permits or as international students with a student visas.

The opportunities are certainly there for physiotherapists, categorized under the National Occupational Classification (NOC) 2021 system with the code 31202.

“Over the next 10 years, the growth in demand for physiotherapists in Canada will outstrip the number of new job seekers entering the profession,” noted the Canadian Physiotherapy Association in a submission to the House of Commons Standing Committee on Human Resources, Skills and Social Development and the Status of Persons with Disabilities last year.


“The labour shortage in the industry will continue to persist at a national level and the aging population, coupled with longer life expectancy, means the demand for health professionals, including physiotherapists, physiotherapy technologists and physiotherapist assistants will sharply increase. This will result in a reduced availability of physiotherapy services, for a profession that is already experiencing burnout and exhaustion.”

In Canada, the median hourly wage for physiotherapists is $41.03 but that varies from a low of $25 right up to $49.68, reveals Job Bank.

Physiotherapists In Canada Can Earn A Median Annual Income Of Up To $96,876

Based on a standard, 37.5-hour work week, that means physiotherapists could expect to earn a top median annual income of $96,876.

Canada first signalled its intention to start occupation-specific draws through Express Entry in June last year, when changes were made to the Immigration, Refugee and Protection Act to allow invitations based on occupations and other attributes, such as language ability.

The majority of Canada’s provinces have been issuing occupation-specific invitations for several years.

Under the changes to the act, the immigration minister is required to consult provinces and territories, members of industry, unions, employers, workers, worker advocacy groups, settlement provider organizations, and immigration researchers and practitioners, before announcing new categories.

IRCC must also report to parliament each year on the categories that were chosen and the reason for the choices.

Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) says the number of occupations facing shortages doubled between 2019 and 2021. From 2018 to 2022, federal high skilled admissions accounted for between 34 and 40 per cent of overall French-speaking admissions outside Quebec, which manages its own immigration intake.

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