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  • Arisnel Mesidor, M.A., RCIC

Immigration is the solution to Nova Scotia's healthcare labour shortage


As the population of Nova Scotia continues to age, the demand for healthcare professionals increases. However, with a lack of young people in the province entering into healthcare professions, Nova Scotia is facing a healthcare labour shortage.


To solve this issue, Nova Scotia has turned to immigration as a way to bring in healthcare professionals from other countries. While this approach does help to fill some of the gaps in the workforce, it also has its challenges. In particular, there is a need for more support for newcomers who are working in the healthcare sector in Nova Scotia.


Nova Scotia's Health Minister Michelle Thompson has said that immigration will be the solution to its acute healthcare worker shortage. Nova Scotia's intention to speed up credential recognition and licensing for foreign-trained healthcare professionals follows Ontario's lead. In its most recent Labour Force Survey, released in July 2022, Statistics Canada noted that an acute labour scarcity in the healthcare system is being exacerbated by a large number of employees off sick as a result of the latest stage of Covid-19.


The Nova Scotia government has announced plans to speed up the credential recognition and licensing process for foreign-trained healthcare professionals. Currently, the province relies heavily on internationally educated professionals to fill gaps in the healthcare workforce. However, these professionals often face significant hurdles in terms of getting their credentials recognized and obtaining a license to practice. The new initiative will streamline the process and provide more support for applicants. It is hoped that this will help to attract more qualified candidates to the province and improve access to healthcare services.



By scheduling more employees to work extra hours, hospitals and clinics can respond to absences and unmet labour demand. According to Statistics Canada, the proportion of nurses working overtime in July 2022 was at its highest level since comparable data became available in 1997.


Recently, the province has welcomed many people who have fled their countries in search of safety. Families facing such great adversity have found a safe harbour in Nova Scotia, which has become home to countless newcomers. The province's Newcomer Health Clinic has seen its annual budget tripled. With this investment, the Newcomer Health Clinic will be able to provide primary healthcare to newly arrived refugees in Nova Scotia for many years to come.


Nova Scotia relies on immigration to bring in more healthcare professionals from other countries. Mesidor Canadian Immigration Services is here to help with any immigration applications if you are interested of immigrating to Canada as a health care worker. Please contact us to know more about the immigration programs.




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