B.C. announces new supports to attract internationally trained nurses

VANCOUVER – British Columbia is looking to other places to solve its nursing shortage, starting with financial support to help internationally trained nurses get registered and licensed faster.

The Health Ministry says some nurses trained outside the country can wait years to get registered and licensed as their credentials are assessed and their English language skills are tested.

The province will provide a maximum of $16,000 to about 1,500 internationally educated nurses to pay for everything from application fees to English language testing and education upgrading.

So-called nurse navigators will support them through the assessment and recruitment process as part of a $12-million initiative.

Health Minister Adrian Dix says B.C. will also launch a marketing campaign across Canada and in other countries in order to recruit nurses to a province where the population is growing and aging faster than in other Canadian jurisdictions.

He says a provincial recruitment agency called Health Match BC will manage the bursaries and help hire nurse navigators to streamline a process that has been too complex.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published April 19, 2022.

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