Apply Nursing Jobs in Canada 2022

Information and advice for Canadian newcomers looking for nursing jobs. Special thanks to mimi, who provided invaluable personal insights for the creation of this guide about nursing jobs in Canada.

Travel is one of the best opportunities that a Bachelor’s Degree in Nursing Science can offer. Nurses have always traveled the globe. International nurses have become increasingly interested in Australia, the UAE, and the UK in recent years. As we move into the 2020s, it is becoming more attractive to be an international nurse in Canada.

As a nurse, I didn’t consider looking for jobs in Canada when I became licensed. I was aware that I would need to sit an exam in order to obtain my license. Like many other Irish people, my goal was to move to Australia. After a year of working there, I realized the distance was too great and returned to Ireland.

Now, I’m living in Toronto and am in the process to obtain my nursing license. Although it was a difficult road, I am glad I persevered and am now ready to start my Canadian nursing career.

Canada has a strong health care system that makes it a desirable destination for international nurses looking to further their career as nurses. The most sought-after nurses include those with expertise in operating rooms and emergency departments, as well as those who want to work in remote or isolated communities.

To secure a job as a nurse in Canada, there are a few things job seekers must know. First, your international credentials will be evaluated and you will need to become licensed to practice nursing in Canada. More information is available below. The second is that procedures vary from one territory or province to the next. As you do your research, you should consider a few destinations.

Canada nursing jobs available

You have the required nursing qualifications, but how do you translate this experience and training into a rewarding career as a nurse in Canada? Let’s see!

How to become a nurse in Canada

Register with the NNAS online service to get your license. If you want, you can register online before arriving in Canada.

Registering with the NNAS requires you to fill out an online form indicating your demographics, education, and professional experience over the past five years. You also need to declare any nursing bodies that you are or were previously registered with.

If you are a Canadian nurse who has been educated in another country and is looking for a job in Canada, the NNAS will require that you apply.

  • Registered Nurse (RN).
  • LPN (Licensed Practical Nurse)
  • Registered Psychiatric Nurses (RPN).

Registering is expensive. To register with NNAS, you will need to pay $765 USD (as of 2020). To register with the NNAS, you will need to send notary-signed copies (passport, birth certificates) and have people from your college, past employment, and nursing bodies that you are registered with, complete the forms. These forms can be viewed on the website. You have one year to return any documents.

After all documents have been returned, you should be approved by NNAS. This can take up to one year. After approval, you can apply for licensure in the destination province In Canada.

NNAS will assess your credentials and compare them to Canadian standards. You can find more information in the NNAS’ online handbook.

The NNAS is not the only requirement in Canada. Each province requires that you take an English exam or French if your goal is to work in Quebec. If you do not have proof of English proficiency, you will need to take the English exam. This is the exam that will test your English language skills.

The Canadian government announced additional funding in 2021 to assist foreign nurses in obtaining credential recognition. Find out more about this initiative.

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The NCLEX: What you need to know

To practice English, most provinces and territories will need strong English-language skills. Quebec requires a basic knowledge of French, although not always. To complete the registration process, you will need to pass an exam. This exam is also known outside Quebec as the NCLEXRN exam. It is administered by the National Council of State Boards of Nursing.

The National Council Licensure Examination is designed to make sure you are able to start practicing as a nurse. This exam is required for all nurses who have been trained in North America to work in Canada. This is an intuitive, computer-based exam that has a majority of multiple choices. UWorld offers online tutoring to assist with the preparation. You can take the exam again if you fail. The NCLEX is valid throughout North America once you have passed it.

It is recommended that you complete the registration and application process as much as possible from your country. It is usually easier to obtain documents regarding your international credentials from your country of origin. This allows you to avoid unwelcome time differences, international calling charges, and other problems that may arise when dealing with bureaucracy abroad.

Contact the appropriate regulatory agency for your territory or province to learn more.

  1. College of Registered Nurses of British Columbia
  2. College and Association of Registered Nurses of Alberta
  3. Saskatchewan Registered Nurses Association
  4. College of Registered Nurses of Manitoba
  5. College of Nurses of Ontario
  6. Ordre des infirmieres et infirmiers du Quebec
  7. Nurses Association of New Brunswick
  8. College of Registered Nurses of Nova Scotia
  9. Association of Registered Nurses of Prince Edward Island
  10. College of Registered Nurses of Newfoundland and Labrador
  11. Registered Nurses Association of the Northwest Territories and Nunavut
  12. Yukon Registered Nurses Association

What can you do while waiting for your Canadian nursing license?

For nurses who are internationally qualified and want to work in Canada, I recommend that you start your networking in the health care sector as soon as you arrive. You can update your resume on LinkedIn or Indeed, and you can apply for administrative jobs in the health care sector. After you get your license, you can speak with doctors and nurses from all specialties. This will help you navigate your career.

What can you expect from Canada’s nursing jobs?

Canada, like many other countries, is facing health service problems. There are a lack of public services and staffing shortages. The wait times for procedures have increased. You will be a more skilled Registered Nurse (RN), as hospitals are likely to employ more RPN (registered practice nurses) as cost-effective staffing.

Despite the challenges mentioned above, Canada still has the potential to grow and develop in the public service as well as the opportunity to work in privately-owned practices.

Why choose Canada?

Before I chose Canada, I considered nursing in the UK. I knew there were great opportunities for education and career growth. I was unsure about Brexit at the time.

I applied for the Middle East and conducted several remote interviews. I had four years of experience and was offered a salary of EUR42,000 ($62,000CAD) which is tax-free. However, the standard work week was only 48 hours. Once granted, the nursing license would have only allowed me to work at the hospital where I was contracted. This would have meant that my options were very limited. The 40-day annual leave offered by Middle East countries is often more than the standard 15 days for Canadian RNs. This cannot be taken within the first six month of the contract, so I would need to work at least 48 hours per week for six consecutive months. After considering the offer, I decided to decline it.

Canada offers competitive salaries for nurses working 36-40 hours per week. The new acute care graduate salary in Ontario is close to $59,000CAD and includes an annual increment pay rise. This is very comparable to Ireland, where a graduate begins on less than EUR30,000 per year ($45,000CAD). Pay is dependent on where you live, so make sure to thoroughly research each city and province before making any final decisions.

Health coverage is another benefit, which usually kicks in after three months of staying in the country. If you work in the private sector, you might be eligible for additional health benefits and bonuses.

Another advantage of living in Australia is the fact that Canada is closer to home than the UK and Ireland for people from Europe. I am still working towards my license but I am nearly one year into my IEC visa. I moved to Toronto last summer and have almost survived my first winter. I am so happy I decided to move to Canada.

For international nurses, there are nursing jobs in Canada

These resources will help you succeed in interviews and sharpen your resume (CV), as you apply to jobs for nurses in Canada.

Find jobs in Canada

Canada Resume Format

These are the 57 questions that you might be asked during an interview

Canada: Networking

Get more information from our Getting Started Guide. It will help you plan your move to Canada and assist with job searches.