Prince Edward Island Goes To Dubai For Internationally-Trained Nurse Recruitment

Prince Edward Island Goes To Dubai For Internationally-Trained Nurse Recruitment
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Prince Edward Island’s main health authority and officials with its immigration department travelled to Dubai in March to recruit nurses in the United Arab Emirates.

Rebecca Gill, acting director of Workforce Planning, Recruitment and Pharmaceutical Services with Health PEI, reportedly told the CBC the health authority is expecting up to 31 nurses to immigrate to that province by early next year.

They’re excited to come to Prince Edward Island,” Gill reportedly said. “They’re excited to be part of our healthcare system and make a difference. It’s a very significant effort so I do look forward to them continuing in the future.”

Serious labour shortages are plaguing healthcare authorities throughout Canada. On Prince Edward Island, the job vacancy rate at Health PEI currently stands at about 20 per cent.

The lack of nursing staff has gotten so dire on Prince Edward Island that many nurses are now reluctant to accept additional shifts.

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“I hear from our nurses that they are afraid to pick up a shift because they don’t know if they’re going to be able to go home when that shift is over – or they’re afraid to pick up a shift because they don’t know if they’re going to come in and there’s going to be adequate staffing,” Tracy Wolbaum, executive director of human resources for Health PEI, reportedly said.

In Canada, registered nurses and registered psychiatric nurses are classified under the National Occupational Classification (NOC) system under the code 31301 and are in great demand across the country.

Job Bank, the federal government’s job-hunting and career planning website, ranks the job prospects of nurses as “very good”, its highest rating and predicts there will be an additional shortfall of another 11,700 nurses within eight years.

“For registered nurses and registered psychiatric nurses, over the period 2022-2031, new job openings (arising from expansion demand and replacement demand) are expected to total 155,400 , while 143,700 new job seekers (arising from school leavers, immigration and mobility) are expected to be available to fill them,” notes the Job Bank website.

Nurses in Canada earn a median annual income of $78,000, Job Bank data shows

The median annual income of these nurses in Canada is $78,000, based on a standard 37.5-hour work week, data from Job Bank reveals.

A search for “nurse” on the job-hunting website turns up 20,917 online listings for jobs for nurses.

Foreign nationals with the qualifications to work in Canada as nurses can use their expertise to seek out jobs here and gain their permanent residency through the many economic immigration programs at the federal and provincial levels, including through the Express Entry system, one of the Provincial Nominee Programs (PNP) or the Skilled Worker program in Quebec.


Through the Express Entry system, nurses can often qualify for the Federal Skilled Worker (FSW) program, provided their Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) profile scores highly enough.

Nurses can also qualify to come to Canada through the Skilled Worker program in Quebec if they score 50 points or more on the province’s selection grid.

Registered nurses who hold a university degree in nursing, registered psychiatric nurses who hold a bachelor’s or post-grad degree in psychiatric nursing, and licensed practical nurses, or registered practical nurses in Ontario, with post-secondary diplomas in nursing, are all welcome in Canada.

If you are a candidate looking for a Canada job, or an employer looking to recruit foreign talent from abroad, can help. Access our expertise through our in-house recruitment enterprise, “the leader in foreign recruitment”.

The first step for a nurse eyeing Canada as a destination for immigration is to have his or her academic credentials evaluated to see if they are up to Canadians standards.

The Canadian government recognizes five organizations for the assessment of foreign educational credentials:

  • World Education Services (WES);
  • International Credential Assessment Service of Canada (ICAS);
  • Comparative Education Service (CES);
  • International Qualifications Assessment Service (IQAS), and;
  • International Credential Evaluation Service (ICES).

Once the educational and background checks have been completed, the next step is for the prospective immigrant to have those nursing credentials recognized in Canada by the National Nursing Assessment Service (NNAS), a step that costs US$650.

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Foreign-Trained Nurses Seeking To Immigrate To Canada Must Create A NNAS Profile

The second step in the process for the foreign national looking to immigrate to Canada as a nurse is to create a profile on the NNAS application page.

That requires:

  • the submission of two pieces of identity that must be notarized, copes of original documents that have been signed, dated and stamped;
  • a completed nursing education form that can be downloaded from the website filled out, and signed before being sent to the school where the nurse was educated for that school’s officials to complete and then send directly to NNAS along with academic records or transcripts, course curriculum and course descriptions and syllabi;
  • submission of the nursing registration form which is to be sent to the nursing licensing authority where the nurse is currently registered in his or her home country;
  • the nursing practice/employment form which must be signed and sent to all employers the nurse has had over the past five years for them to complete and send to NNAS, and;
  • the prospective applicant for immigration’s IELTS language testing results, which must be sent directly to NNAS from an approved language-testing organization or company.

After that has been done and the documents have been received by NNAS, the nurse can submit his or her application and pick the nursing group and provincial association to which they wish to apply.

These include:

  • British Columbia College of Nursing Professionals and Midwives;
  • College of Registered Nurses of Alberta;
  • College of Licensed Practical Nurses of Alberta;
  • College of Registered Psychiatric Nurses of Alberta;
  • Saskatchewan Registered Nurses Association;
  • Saskatchewan Association of Licensed Practical Nurses;
  • Registered Psychiatric Nurses Association of Saskatchewan;
  • College of Registered Nurses of Manitoba;
  • College of Licensed Practical Nurses of Manitoba;
  • College of Registered Psychiatric Nurses of Manitoba;
  • College of Nurses of Ontario;
  • Ordre des infirmières et infirmiers du Québec;
  • Ordre des infirmières et infirmiers auxiliaires du Québec;
  • Nurses Association of New Brunswick;
  • Association of New Brunswick Licensed Practical Nurses;
  • Nova Scotia College of Nursing;
  • College of Registered Nurses of Prince Edward Island;
  • College of Licensed Practical Nurses of Prince Edward Island;
  • College of Registered Nurses of Newfoundland and Labrador;
  • College of Licensed Practical Nurses of Newfoundland and Labrador;
  • Registered Nurses Association of the Northwest Territories and Nunavut;
  • Government of Northwest Territories, Registrar, Professional Licensing, Health and Social Services;
  • Registered Nurses Association of the Northwest Territories and Nunavut;
  • Government of Nunavut, Department of Health;
  • Yukon Registered Nurses Association, and;
  • Government of Yukon, Yukon Department of Community Services.
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Colin Singer
Colin Singer is an international acclaimed Canadian immigration lawyer and founder of featured on Wikipedia. Colin Singer is also founding director of the Canadian Citizenship & Immigration Resource Center (CCIRC) Inc. He served as an Associate Editor of ‘Immigration Law Reporter’, the pre-eminent immigration law publication in Canada. He previously served as an executive member of the Canadian Bar Association’s Quebec and National Immigration Law Sections and is currently a member of the Canadian Chapter of the American Immigration Lawyers Association. Colin has twice appeared as an expert witness before Canada’s House of Commons Standing Committee on Citizenship and Immigration. He is frequently recognized as a recommended authority at national conferences sponsored by government and non-government organizations on matters affecting Canada’s immigration and human resource industries. Since 2009, Colin has been a Governor of the Quebec Bar Foundation a non-profit organization committed to the advancement of the profession, and became a lifetime member in 2018.