In recent years, Canada has witnessed an increasing demand for
qualified health practitioners. Throughout the country's
provinces, these professionals have been given priority in regards
to the attainment of work permits and permanent residency. Notable
among this type of skilled worker are nurses, which are currently
highly sought after. According to the Canadian Nurses Association
(CAN), a staggering 60,000 nurses will be needed by the year 2022
in order to service the country's needs.
Quebec, like Canada's other provinces, has felt the effects
of this severe labour shortage, and predicts an increase in its
demand for nurses in the coming years. Home to a rapidly expanding
net of health services which include the construction of two large
hospital complexes in the city of Montreal, the province now calls
internationally-trained nurses to consider Quebec as their
Due to the severe labour shortage in the province, Nurses in
Quebec can now expect to make on average between $50,000 and
$60,000 a year without taking into account overtime work and
benefits, and can enjoy multiple opportunities throughout their
career to significantly increase their salary. Nurses who occupy
management position in their field can expect to earn over
In addition, the province has set in place immigration policies
that reflect its demand for nurses. Notable among these policies
are the changes recently made to the Quebec Skilled Worker (QSW)
Program. Prior to these changes, nurses with internationally earned
credentials were allowed to obtain temporary residency in Canada
provided that they had a valid job offer that would enable them to
secure a temporary work permit. Once working in Canada as temporary
residents, these applicants could proceed to apply for permanent
residency though a series of venues, such as the Canadian
Experience Class or the Provincial Nominee Program. Now, with the
aim of retaining qualified nurses, Quebec announced a series of
changes to these applicant's requirements to secure temporary
residency, making it possible for nurses to successfully attain a
work permit without having to secure a job offer first.
Furthermore, the QSW Program's points-based system now
prioritizes nurses' training and credentials, giving them high
chances of being accepted. If an applicant obtains enough points,
he or she will obtain the Quebec Selection Certificate, which will
ultimately lead to the attainment of the Canadian permanent
residency. Applicants under the QSW Program are evaluated through a
points grid that takes into consideration numerous qualifications
and skills, such as education and training, offer of employment,
experience, language abilities, and age. An applicant must score a
minimum of 49 points in order to become eligible. Nursing
professionals now obtain 16 points towards their points'
requirement by virtue of their education and training. This
represents the highest possible number of points that a
professional can aspire to obtain because of his training/field of
study. This increase in the points obtained for their area of
training ensures that an applicant with professional credentials in
nursing would be able to score enough points to reach the pass mark
even without obtaining any points for French language ability, a
valuable asset for most prospective immigrants to the province due
to the fact that French is Quebec's official language.
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