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Province streamlining process to accredit international nurses

The B.C. government is hoping to address a nursing shortage in the province by overhauling the process to accredit internationally trained nurses.

Provincial officials say they’re spending $12 million to shorten the lengthy registration and licensing process which can often take up to two years.

They’re also introducing a triple-track system that will allow nurses to apply to be evaluated for multiple positions at once instead of one at a time.

“Our government is committed to addressing the province’s demand for nurses. That’s why we’re launching this comprehensive suite of supports for internationally educated nurses to help them put their skills to use here in B.C.,” said Adrian Dix, Minister of Health in a release.

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“Removing some financial barriers and streamlining the assessment process will facilitate pathways to employment in the province and ensure British Columbians have access to the health care they deserve with even more nurses and healthcare assistants.”

The BC College of Nurses and Midwives receives 350 to 400 applications annually for nursing professions.

They said the changes will double the number of applicants that can be tested per day.

The province will be providing $9 million for bursaries to cover application costs.

It will help 1,500 nurses cover the national nursing assessment service application, English language testing and other costs.

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