Migrate to Canada as a Nurse
Canada Visas & FSWP



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Migrate to Canada as a Nurse (NOC 31301)

Canada has a critical shortage of qualified Nurses. If you are a qualified Nurse with at least 1 year relevant experience then you are eligible to migrate to Canada provided you can score 67 CRS points and have a positive Education Credential Assessment.

How to Migrate to Canada as a Nurse

  • Have 1+ years of relevant experience
  • Hold a relevant nursing qualification
  • Get a positive ECA
  • Pass a language test
  • Lodge an Express Entry application
  • Receive an Invitation to Apply
  • Pay the Visa Fees
  • Pass Health and Character Checks

Canada Visas for International Nurses


Nurses qualify for Express Entry under the Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP) either directly or via Provincial Nomination.


The FSWP is a Permanent Residency Visa, allowing the holder and their immediate family to live and wok in Canada, access healthcare, education, financial services and eventually apply for Canadian Citizenship.


Criteria for Nurses to move to Canada


You need to meet the following criteria:


Work Experience


Nurses migrating to Canada are requited to have at least 1 years of recent, relevant work experience in the past 10 years.




Applicants must hold a relevant formal qualification in Nursing. Example qualifications include a Bachelors or Masters Degree in Nursing.


Educational Assessment Credential


As an internationally-educated nurse, you must obtain an ECA report.


The ECA provider for International Nurses immigrating to Canada is the National Nursing Assessment Service (NNAS).


NNAS will verify your identity, review your nursing education and work experience, and determine if your credentials meet the Canadian standards for nursing practice.


This process takes up to three months, depending on the complexity of your case and the volume of applications being processed.


While the NNAS is not involved in issuing nursing licenses or registering nurses to work in Canada, it does streamline the process of obtaining an ECA report and forwarding that report to the regulatory bodies or colleges of nurses in Canada.


Language Skills


You must be able to demonstrate a good level of English or French (the two main languages of Canada).


Express Entry Application


Nurses are eligible for the Federal Skilled Worker Program & Provincial Nomination, which are administered by the Express Entry system.


Age Limit


There are no set age limits to migrate to Canada as a Nurse, although after age 44 applicants score zero CRS points for age.


Job Offer


Qualified Nursing applicants applying to Immigrate to Canada are not required to have a formal job offer because Nursing is on the Express Entry Flagship Application Management System.


Press for a Free Visa Assessment to find out more


Background Checks


You’ll need to pass health and character checks.

Alternative Titles


These alternative Nursing roles are eligible to migrate to Canada:


  • Registered Nurses
  • Licensed Practical Nurses
  • Nurse Practitioners
  • Nurse Managers
  • Psychiatric Nurses
  • Community Health Nurses
  • Occupational Health Nurses
  • Perioperative Nurses
  • Neonatal Nurses
  • Rehabilitation Nurses
  • Critical Care Nurses
  • Forensic Nurses
  • Nurse Prescibers
  • Nurse Anesthetists
  • Nurse Practitioners


Apply for Licensing as a Nurse Migrating to Canada


After obtaining an Educational Credential Assessment (ECA) from the National Nursing Assessment Service (NNAS) you can apply diectly to Canadian Provinces for Licensing.


You can apply for registration either before or after your Visa is granted.


You are required to meet the specific requirements of the regulatory body or college of nurses in your province or territory.


These requirements include completing an application form, paying an application fee, and submitting any additional documents or information that may be required.


Once your application is approved, you may be required to take the nursing jurisprudence exam which is a test of your knowledge of nursing laws, regulations, and ethical standards in Canada.


The nursing jurisprudence exam is online and can be completed at your own pace.


In addition to the nursing jurisprudence exam some Provinces require applicants to take a further nursing exam or complete a Bridging Program.


Nurses from these countries typically do not need to do Bridging Programs or further exams:


  • USA
  • UK
  • Australia
  • Ireland
  • Singapore
  • France
  • Germany
  • Netherlands
  • Denmark
  • Sweden
  • Finland
  • Spain
  • Malta

What is the Criteria to migrate to Canada as a Nurse?

Eligibility requirements include having at least 1 years relevant experience as a Nurse, scoring 67 CRS Points and having a positive Educational Assessment Credential from the National Nursing Assessment Service.

What is the age limit to Immigrate to Canada as a Nurse?

There is no age limit to Immigrate to Canada as a Nurse although, the older applicants are, the less CRS points they will get under the age factor.


Take a Free Visa Assessment to check your eligibility

Which skilled migration visas are suitable for Nurses in Canada?

The Federal Skilled Worker Program is a popular choice for Nurses who want to immigrate to Canada independently without the need for sponsorship by an Canadian employer.


The Provincial Nomination Program is another attractive option for Nurses. This visa requires a Nurse to be nominated by a Canadian province.

What is the NOC Code for Nurses Immigrating to Canada?

NOC 31301

What is the Express Entry system?

The Express Entry system is an online application management system used by the Canadian government to process applications for permanent residency. It allows eligible candidates to create a profile and enter a pool of potential applicants. The government then conducts regular draws and invites candidates with the highest Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) scores to apply for permanent residency.

What is the format of the NNAS assessment?

The NNAS (National Nursing Assessment Service) assessment for internationally educated nurses is a multi-step process:


Document Evaluation: The first step involves the submission of documents such as academic transcripts, nursing credentials, work experience certificates, references and language proficiency test results.


National Nursing Exam: In some cases applicants may need to pass a national nursing exam such as the NCLEX-RN (National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses).


Do I Need a Job Offer to Immigrate to Canada as a a Nurse?

No, a formal job offer is not a pre-requisite to submitting your Express Entry or getting an Invitation to Apply.


Nursing is on the Flagship Express Entry Nomination System which means qualified Nurses are regularly invited to apply for the Federal Skilled Worker Program without a Job Offer

Does having a Job Offer help my application?

Yes, even though Nurses are on the Flagship Express Entry Nomination System having a job offer will also help.


To receive a Job Offer you must already by licensed to Practice as a Nurse in the Province where the job is located.

Can I include my family members in my immigration application as a Nurse?

Yes, your immediate family members are included.

Do I need to take a language test to immigrate to Canada as a nurse?

You need to take a language test as part of your application for immigration to Canada as a nurse. The language test is used to assess your proficiency in either English or French, which are the two official languages of Canada.

Can I apply for immigration to Canada if I have a medical condition?

Having a medical condition does not necessarily disqualify you from immigrating to Canada, but you will need to undergo a medical examination as part of your application to ensure that you do not pose a risk to public health in Canada.

Are there any specific websites or job boards focused on Nursing jobs in Canada?

Canadian Nurses Association (CNA) Job Board: https://cna-aiic.ca/en/careers/job-board


Registered Nurses' Association of Ontario (RNAO) Job Board: https://myrnao.ca/careers/jobs-board


CareerBuilder Canada: https://www.careerbuilder.ca/


Government Job Bank: https://www.jobbank.gc.ca/home

How long does the application process take to immigrate to Canada as a nurse?

Allow a timeframe of between 9-14 months from the absolute state to the very end of the process.

What are the housing options for nurses in Canada?

Housing options for nurses in Canada depends on the region where you plan to work, as well as your personal preferences and budget.


Some nurses may choose to rent an apartment or house, while others may choose to purchase a home.


Depending on your employer and the region of Canada where you work, you may be eligible for subsidies.

Further Resources

Free Visa Assessment for Nurses: Take Visa Assessment


Canadian Nurses Association
Website: https://cna-aiic.ca/

National Nursing Assessment Service (NNAS)
Website: https://nnas.ca/

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC)
Website: https://www.canada.ca/en/immigration-refugees-citizenship.html


International Qualifications Assessment Service (IQAS)
Website: https://www.alberta.ca/iqas.aspx


Website: https://www.healthforceontario.ca/

Nursing Education Program Approval Board (NEPAB)
Website: https://www.nepab.ca/