Updated Jan. 17
The British Columbia College of Nurses and Midwives (BCCNM) and the Nursing Community Assessment Service (NCAS) welcome
today's announcement of funding through the Ministry of Employment and Social Development Canada's
Foreign Credential Recognition Program (FCRP).
The funding, up to $9,934,155 over five years, is being granted by the FCRP will allow NCAS to pilot a virtual version of its simulation lab assessment.
NCAS' simulation lab assessment enables internationally educated nurses (IENs) to demonstrate their knowledge and skills through a series of simulated patient encounters. At present, the SLA must be taken in person at select locations in British Columbia and Atlantic Canada. A virtual assessment could be taken anywhere, saving time and money, and supporting IENs to enter Canada's health-care workforce in the role most closely matched to their current nursing competence.
Please note this project is a four-year initiative, and virtual assessments are not yet available. Updates will be provided as they become available.
The virtual assessment initiative is just the latest step to reduce barriers for IENs. In
January 2023, BCCNM and NCAS launched a two-year IEN pathway pilot, offering more options for education credential assessment, new ways to meet language proficiency requirements, as well as the chance to be assessed for education and competencies in three nursing professions simultaneously. In addition, the BC Ministry of Health offered grants covering most or all costs associated with seeking registration in British Columbia.
The pathway has been a tremendous success. Since its launch, applications to BCCNM and NCAS have increased by more than 1,000% year over year. The number of IENs to successfully obtain registration with BCCNM has more than doubled.
The Government of Canada established the Foreign Credential Recognition Program (FCRP) to enhance the integration of skilled newcomers into the Canadian labour market.
The FCRP provides funding to governments and organizations for projects that improve the assessment and recognition of the international credentials and competencies that individuals have acquired in other countries. The FCRP also supports joint initiatives among provinces and territories and other partners to improve the mobility of Canadian workers in regulated occupations as they seek jobs across Canada.