Are you an internationally educated nurse (IEN) who wants to work as a registered nurse (RN) in Newfoundland and Labrador? If so, you may be interested to know that the province has recently introduced new pathways for registration that can help you get licensed faster and easier.
Why Newfoundland and Labrador Needs More Nurses
Newfoundland and Labrador is facing a shortage of nurses, especially in rural and remote areas. According to the College of Registered Nurses of Newfoundland and Labrador (CRNNL), the province needs to recruit and retain more than 1,000 nurses by 2025 to meet the demand for healthcare services.
The COVID-19 pandemic has also increased the pressure on the healthcare system and the need for more nurses. The province has been experiencing outbreaks and lockdowns, as well as challenges with vaccine distribution and administration.
To address these issues, the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador has announced a plan to expand the recruitment and retention of nurses, including IENs. The plan includes:
1. Increasing the number of seats in the Bachelor of Nursing program at Memorial University by 50 per year, starting in 2023.
2. Providing financial incentives for nurses who work in rural and remote areas, such as relocation assistance, tuition reimbursement, and loan forgiveness.
3. Streamlining the registration and licensing process for nurses educated outside of the province, including IENs
How to Become a Registered Nurse in Newfoundland and Labrador as an IEN
If you are an IEN who wants to become an RN in Newfoundland and Labrador, you will need to apply to the CRNNL, which is the regulatory body for all RNs and nurse practitioners (NPs) in the province. The CRNNL is responsible for assessing your education, competence, and eligibility for registration.
The CRNNL has introduced two new pathways for registration for IENs, depending on your country of education and licensure:
Designated Countries Pathway
This pathway is for IENs who were educated and who are currently licensed in good standing in one of the following countries: USA, UK, Ireland, India, Philippines, Australia, New Zealand, Nigeria, or Hong Kong. This pathway is faster and simpler, as you will not need to undergo a competency assessment or a supervised practice experience. You will only need to provide proof of your identity, education, licensure, language proficiency, and good conduct, and pass the Canadian Registered Nurse Examination (CRNE).
This pathway is for IENs who were educated outside and who are not currently licensed in good standing in one of the designated countries. This pathway is more comprehensive, as you will need to undergo a competency assessment and a supervised practice experience, in addition to providing the same documents as the designated countries’ pathway. You will also need to pass the CRNE.
How Long Does It Take to Get Registered as an IEN in Newfoundland and Labrador?
The time it takes to get registered as an IEN in Newfoundland and Labrador depends on several factors, such as:
1. The completeness and accuracy of your application and supporting documents.
2. The availability of the CRNE and the competency assessment.
3. The availability of a supervised practice experience placement.
4. The processing time of the CRNNL and other agencies involved in your application.
However, the CRNNL has stated that it aims to process your application within 5-7 business days, once it receives all the required documents and fees. This means that you could potentially get registered within a week if you meet all the criteria and follow all the steps.
Of course, this does not include the time it takes to prepare your application and documents, which may vary depending on your situation. Therefore, it is advisable to start your application process as early as possible and to contact the CRNNL for any questions or guidance.
How to Apply for Registration as an IEN in Newfoundland and Labrador
If you are ready to apply for registration as an IEN in Newfoundland and Labrador, you will need to follow these steps:
Choose your pathway
Decide whether you are eligible for the designated countries pathway or the general pathway, based on your country of education and licensure.
Create an account
Go to the CRNNL website and create an account on the online portal. You will need to provide your personal information, such as your name, date of birth, email address, and phone number.
Complete your application
Fill out the online application form and pay the application fee of $300. You will need to provide information about your education, licensure, work experience, and language proficiency.
Submit your documents: Upload or mail the required documents to the CRNNL, such as your transcripts, license verification, language test results, and criminal record check. You may also need to submit additional documents, depending on your pathway and circumstances.
Complete your assessment
If you are applying through the general pathway, you will need to complete a competency assessment, which is an online test that evaluates your knowledge, skills, and judgment as an RN. You will need to pay a fee of $500 and schedule a date and time for the assessment.
Complete your supervised practice experience
If you are applying through the general pathway, you will also need to complete a supervised practice experience, which is a period of clinical practice under the guidance of an RN mentor. You will need to pay a fee of $1,000 and find a suitable placement that meets the CRNNL requirements.
Pass the CRNE
Regardless of your pathway, you will need to pass the CRNE, which is a national exam that tests your competence and readiness to practice as an RN in Canada. You will need to pay a fee of $800 and register for the exam through the CRNNL website. The exam is offered four times a year, in January, April, July, and October.
Receive your registration
Once you have completed all the steps and met all the requirements, you will receive your registration certificate and license number from the CRNNL. You will then be able to practice as an RN in Newfoundland and Labrador.
Becoming a registered nurse in Newfoundland and Labrador as an internationally educated nurse is a rewarding and achievable goal, thanks to the new pathways for registration that the province has introduced. By following the steps and meeting the criteria, you can get registered within 5-7 days and start your career as an RN in one of the most beautiful and welcoming places in Canada.